Can Online Education Replace Traditional Classroom? – 2020 Guide

Even a decade ago hardly anyone could predict that e-learning would seriously threaten the existence of traditional classroom instruction. It was always there, somewhere apart from formal education. For many people, online education was associated with ‘extra’ knowledge rather than something really serious.

However, with the emergence of different tools and apps, online education has become a preferred choice for many students around the world. It obviously has certain advantages compared to a traditional classroom, especially, when it comes to curriculum planning, time management, and travel.

Today, almost every reputable educational institution offers an opportunity to study online or in a hybrid mode. The quality of such education is quite similar to the one students get in the classroom. The biggest difference lies in human interaction and in the frequency thereof.

In this article, teaming up with the pros from EssayWriterService, we are going to discuss the odds of online education replacing traditional classrooms. Who will win – foe or allies of the changes to the classic knowledge landscape?

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Campus Life

One of the brightest sides of student life is the atmosphere on campus. Whether you live in a dorm or rent an apartment, you are a part of it. Parties, workshops, seminars, charitable projects… These are the elements that make student years rewarding and fulfilling.

Online education lacks such interactions. It fails to provide people coming from all over the world with lifelong friendships and close ties. It also deprives students of communication and interaction so much needed in learning.

Discussions and Debates

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Debates and discussions are quite routine for students at universities. Their active participation is evaluated by teachers and included in the overall grade.

Even though online education fosters active participation and discussions, they only take place on-screen. This does not create the same effect as the ones that happen in real life. Overall, discussions and debates that happen on spot can help assess students’ knowledge and skills better.

Hobbies and Interests

Living on campus and being a student, we also study ourselves and discover our talents. Colleges and universities are the best places to do that before all the commitments of adult life set in. E-learning makes it way harder to discover your best qualities than a traditional face-to-face environment.

Students who study online usually feel limited about self-actualization and self-development. They do only the requested assignments, not participating in extracurricular activities.

Motivation

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When we talk about traditional instructions, students admit they feel more motivated to achieve success in classroom assignments. The collective prevails over the individual, pushing students to work more and become better. Moreover, they are also motivated to read more to shine brighter on seminars and discussions.

Online education is also disorganizing for people who find it hard to discipline themselves. The classroom environment and student competition are always an additional factor for learners to put themselves together and work harder.

Technology

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With the growth and advancement of technologies, online education takes over traditional instruction. This is a cold fact. And there are also many benefits. For example, students with different difficulties do not find themselves marginalized. The learning environment gets flexible and can meet individual learning requirements.

Traditional classroom instruction is much more oriented at students having no special needs. Thus, online education deals with the problem of inequality better.

Field-Specific Education

The modern knowledge landscape focuses on preparing narrow specialists in a variety of subfields. The era of universal professionals has been long gone.

It will take years for traditional classrooms to adjust to the needs of the current labor market. However, narrow-field specialists are needed right now. Online education has been perceived as more profession-related. Thus, it has a better chance of providing field-specific education.

Soft Skills

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Employers value their staff for both professional and soft skills. Universities and colleges are the best places to learn both. In a traditional classroom, many students become more time-organized, communicative, and adaptable.

Online education can make students more disciplined and organized. However, communication and teamwork are hard to develop online exclusively. There are fewer chances to grow adaptability and flexibility as well.

Communication and Interaction

This paragraph is not about socialization. It is about the fact that some professions cannot be learned online. If you are a mathematician, engineer, or a graphic designer, a computer is almost everything you need for education and work.

However, if you are a nurse, a surgeon, or a teacher, you’ll most likely need more than digitized learning materials to become a professional. These jobs require one to be an active listener and a communicator. Moreover, you need to learn from practitioners to gain some hands-on skills. Online education cannot provide enough in this case.

Effectiveness and Efficiency

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The effectiveness of online education vs. traditional classrooms is hard to compare. As for the quality of learning materials and academic requirements, they are pretty similar. One can find some benefits and drawbacks in both cases.

However, online education is likely to beat offline classrooms in terms of effectiveness and efficiency in the nearest future. It will continue to develop as long as technologies advance. New tools will emerge and be implemented, and more opportunities will arise. Traditional classroom, however, is much harder to amend and change.

Crises

2020 has proven that all forecasts and projections can go wrong when the world faces uncertainty. Just remember the beginning of this year. Traditional instruction was still valued more than online education. Today, lots of colleges, universities, and even high schools have already shifted to online education.

Pandemic or other crises will only enhance the importance of online education. The reality is that we depend on technologies to continue our routine more than we realize. However, this does not mean that we should eliminate traditional instruction right away.

Final Words

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The question of whether online education will replace classroom instruction is not an easy one. Both have their pros and cons. The current situation gives more credit to e-learning. Yet, we never know what will happen in the future. It seems that looking for the right balance is always the best choice.

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