There have been a few changes here and there in education over the last few decades. The biggest change was the introduction of the internet and computer devices into the classroom. Other than that, it has been mostly little tweaks here and there. Until now. There is a chance that virtual education could eventually replace the traditional classroom style in the near future.
We all know what the traditional classroom education looks like. A teacher is in the front of the class and hopefully instructing the 20 to 30 students on topics that they need to know from all subject areas to help them become academically more educated. This type of teaching has been done this way for centuries. That could be about to change.
What Is Virtual Education?
Virtual education differs dramatically as it can be an ever-changing learning environment. No longer is the teacher nor the student tied down to the classroom. In fact, they don’t have to be located in a school building at all. Virtual education means that the teacher and student can be totally separated by time and space as they communicate through multimedia resources, video conferencing, and the internet.
Whether the lessons presented on video are live or recorded, either one is acceptable. In fact, the lessons may not even be on video at all. Education forum boards can allow the teacher to present the lesson and answer any questions from the students. Assignments can be issued and the students can attach them to emails to their teacher when they are finished.
There Are Several Advantages to Virtual Education
You might be wondering how well virtual education could go over with all students without having an educator in front of them to keep them on track. While it might be difficult for younger students (primary level) with short attention spans and perhaps the inability to read fluently, it could do very well with junior high, high school, and college students.
Sometimes all it takes to change a student’s life is to meet the right teacher. With virtual education, the student would have options on who their educator would be. The teacher could live in another state or even another country. In addition, if you are learning a subject like Math, wouldn’t you want one of the top mathematics teachers available instead of perhaps the one at the local high school that can be confusing and is ill-equipped to teach proficiently. Having exposure to teachers that they are excited about could make all the difference in the world.
The students do not have to be isolated from one another either. Virtual classrooms are everywhere already if you look for them. There can be great dialogue and communication between students as they respond back and forth to each other in the forums. Time zones would not matter as a response could happen within minutes or hours. That is one of the best aspects of virtual education. Each student can be on their own schedule. If they like to get most of their work completed in the morning, no problem. If they would rather work in the afternoon or even at night on the curriculum, it is up to them. Virtual education offers a flexible schedule that cannot be duplicated in a traditional classroom setting.
Furthermore, the amount of online resources available would shame the normal textbook that most teachers use in the classroom as their guide to educating their pupils within the curriculum. It is past time that educators and school districts stray away from the expensive textbook companies and locate the available free resources online that are just as good if not better.
There Are Various Learning Styles to Consider
We all learn in different ways. What might work for some students will not work for others. Does virtual education have promise? Certainly. It could be exactly what many kids need to get them excited again about education. However, there are other students that will do better with a classroom teacher directly in front of them and guiding them every step of the way. Still, it will be fascinating to see the possibilities that continue to emerge in education and how open school districts will be to trying them out.