As classrooms worldwide transition to remote learning, many instructors, parents, and students are concerned about distance education’s efficacy.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, online learning is quickly becoming the “new normal” and is likely here to stay. Fortunately, there’s plenty of research to prove that online teaching methods are quite useful and often more successful than traditional classrooms.
1. Online learning has a higher retention rate
Statistics show that online learning within corporations has increased the information retention rate to 25-60%. In comparison, in-person training’s retention rate is much lower, sitting between 8-10%.
While this statistic above measures employees’ remote learning success, it applies to students of any age. Suppose students can learn to adapt to distance learning early in their education career. In that case, it reinforces the skill and capability to understand and be better suited for remote work in the future. By teaching students these necessary skills now, we set them up for success in their future.
2. Distance education offers a better learning experience
In the United States, a survey showed that 41% of graduate students believe that their online education provided a better learning experience than traditional classroom teaching methods. In the same study, 38% of students found remote learning to be of the same quality as in-person learning, whereas only 15% believed distance education was not good. While this survey presents a clear opinion on the majority’s mindset, it does not account for the remaining 6% of students who have not enrolled in online studies.
3. Online institutions have smaller class sizes
One of the main downsides to traditional classroom learning is overcrowded lecture halls with professors who can’t address each student personally. If you’ve taught or taken university classes, you may be familiar with the sea of notepaper and laptops obscuring students’ faces and the suffocating anonymity that can accompany this. Truthfully, most students want to connect with their instructors and ask questions about the course material, but they often don’t get the opportunity.
“Fortunately, 97% of online institutions offer student/faculty ratios of 25:1 or better.” Students enrolled in distance education are more likely to connect with their professors and receive a higher learning level than those attending in-person classes.
4. Mobile remote learning is more accessible
A recent survey conducted by J. Clement showed that “67% of American college students used their mobile devices to complete all or some of their course-related activities.”
As online learning becomes the norm, many instructors are experiencing issues with the “opportunity gap.” The opportunity gap, often referred to as the achievement gap, is used to describe the correlation between a student’s ability to procure necessary learning materials and their overall success.
For example, students with better technology and resources are more likely to succeed in a course than those who do not have the right supplies. With remote learning implementation, students who can’t afford expensive laptops are more inclined to use a basic smartphone with internet access. Because mobile devices are much more affordable than computers, learning apps and online teaching tools are much more beneficial to distance education.
5. Students prefer distance education
An online survey showed that more than “60% of internet users reported that online courses are preferable to fit their lifestyle and schedules.” Online learning provides students with the opportunity to study from their own home’s comforts while still receiving a high-quality level of instruction. With online teaching becoming more popular and even enforced due to the pandemic, many students adapt well to virtual learning.