Online Learning vs Traditional Learning

Posted by Mandla V Hlongwane

Bag Students

Looking at the picture above, gone are those days where students have to carry heavy books for classes, stressing with class attendance, printing and photocopying of study materials, tight schedules between education and personal duties. However, traditional education provide with discipline to get work completed especially if you not a person with self-motivation. The method of traditional education will provide with the support and will to complete assignment and tasks on daily basis. Other area to consider on traditional education is when a student needs a one-on-one communication with the instructor and class room experience. Hence, when someone does not have direct communication with their instructors they may tend not to do well with the work they already have.

Due to innovative in technology (technology in the changing world of education), there is other method of learning that people may consider “online learning”. But one thing to consider when weighing the options in the amount of time you have every day to work on your studies or courses. Willingness and able to attend college full-time or do you need more flexibility for busy schedules? Taking online education depend on the flexibility of a person. For an example, a working adult needed an online program because of the convenience it offered at Ashford University. This entails that, online learning could be best for a person who have a family to raise, working and cannot find a job that offers flexible schedule. However, online learning do offers flexibility to the student. It is a great opportunity for those who already have a time commitment with both family and work.

By Mandla V Hlongwane


Allen, I. E., & Seaman, J. (2010). Learning on demand: Online education in the United States, 2009. Sloan Consortium. PO Box 1238, Newburyport, MA 01950.

Means, B., Toyama, Y., Murphy, R., Bakia, M., & Jones, K. (2009). Evaluation of Evidence-Based Practices in Online Learning: A Meta-Analysis and Review of Online Learning Studies. US Department of Education.

Swan, K. (2001). Virtual interaction: Design factors affecting student satisfaction and perceived learning in asynchronous online courses. Distance education, 22(2), 306-331.

Curtis, D. D., & Lawson, M. J. (2001). Exploring collaborative online learning.Journal of Asynchronous learning networks, 5(1), 21-34.

McGreal, R., & Elliott, M. (2008). Technologies of online learning (e-learning).Theory and practice of online learning, 115.

McDonald, R. T., & Pereira, F. C. (2006). Online Learning of Approximate Dependency Parsing Algorithms. In EACL.

June 30, 2015

6 responses on "Online Learning vs Traditional Learning"

  1. The picture made me smile – so true. A good way of summarising what has happened. I agree with you that on-line learning offers flexibility, which is a great advantage. Self-motivation plays a very important role when there is so much flexibility.

    • thanks for for the comment Wilma, it clicks to my mind as like if we bring the language of online learning or technology in education hoping I am not contradicting my self with those two terms. Not so sure if we have to consider the age of individuals. From my personal opinion I thought it will be easily adaptable to the young adult but is like those are the one who are struggling.

  2. This confirms what @wilma said about family life and online courses. @mandla I am not sure if the picture is achievable in our crime filled, electricity-less society?

    • Hei Martha, partially so I would then agree with you that it will be very difficult to achieve what is presented on the scenario displayed on my last blog. But I think that the current crisis we facing is not going to last long it won’t last for long soon it will be resolved. However, it still depend on individuals as to what is it that they want to go with, for example I am an intern and I am working with people who are at my same age but when it comes to technology in education they find it very difficult to adopt so the crisis we facing so far I do not think it will limit us to what we want to achieve.

  3. Like @wilma I also like the image. What do yo think is needed to achieve the vision depicted in the image?

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