Virtual education: benefits and disadvantages

boy and his mother in front of the computer and his mother watching him learning

Telecommunications and electronic devices have established a new teaching modality: virtual. Here are its advantages and disadvantages.

It is no secret to anyone that technological advances have had a very accelerated development in recent decades. This has made it easier to obtain information and develop new teaching methods. One of them is virtual education.

In this educational model, the instructor uses cyberspace to communicate lessons to students rather than meeting in a classroom. Thanks to telecommunications and electronic devices, it is possible to opt for quality distance learning.

This form offers several benefits. However, you also have flaws. If you want to know what they are, we invite you to continue reading.

Benefits of virtual education

The growing demand for virtual education is largely due to the following benefits, which we now detail. Nor can its diffusion be underestimated thanks to recent technological advances

1- Accessibility

One of the great advantages of virtual teaching is the possibility of studying from anywhere in the world and at any time of the day. The important thing is to have access to a computer and the internet.

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Thanks to this, you can organize your time and have it at your convenience. This is useful for people who have a busy schedule.

All you need is a computer and an internet connection to embark on virtual education

2- Time-saving

Since you can study at any time and place, you will no longer waste time traveling to the academic institution. Therefore, waiting for public transport, traffic jams and parking problems will no longer be a problem. Believe it or not, avoiding these situations will save you a lot of time.

3- Cost reduction

This does not mean that virtual training enrollments are cheaper than face-to-face ones. The cost of them will depend on many factors.

However, this type of study will avoid the payment of removals and accommodation. Very common in college students who live outside the academic institution.

Likewise, virtual education usually offers its teaching materials (such as books or guides) in digital format and for free download. This reduces investment

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4- Personalized study rhythm

In addition to managing your own schedule at your convenience, you can also learn at your own pace. Virtual teaching allows you to go back or repeat those difficult lessons for you. If time is not enough for you to finish a class, you can pause it and resume it later

5- Immediate qualifications

In face-to-face education, it is common for teachers to delay grades. This does not happen in the virtual environment, as electronic tools quickly correct student delivery.

Likewise, by having longer and more flexible times, the teacher usually evaluates the participants’ productions as they arrive in their email or on the institution’s platform, which shortens the waiting time

6- Improvement in technological skills

More and more jobs require the effective management of technological tools. Learning in a virtual environment forces the student to keep up-to-date and to master those necessary applications in the workplace.

Companies are increasingly turning to virtual platforms to get work done for their part. This way of operating may last over time

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7- Breadth of perspectives

Virtual training programs offer the opportunity to study with people from other countries and from different cultures. Digital interaction with them will enrich the teaching.

For example, they can provide insightful information about other business cultures and other approaches to problem-solving.

What are the disadvantages of virtual education?

If you want to start your studies virtually or are already doing so, you must know the disadvantages of this educational model. So you can avoid or remedy some

1- It involves greater discipline.

This aspect represents a disadvantage in those who are poorly disciplined and inconsistent. While virtual education is an opportunity to build autonomy, this is not always an easy task. It takes effort and a strong will to have a good organization.

Also, for proper training, students must possess autonomous learning skills, which may be absent

2- Requires access to technology

Not everyone has a computer and internet access. In general, it is the underserved populations that cannot enjoy these benefits. In these cases, face-to-face education is important and necessary

3-The offer of low-quality training courses

More and more, the number of virtual studios increases. However, not everything that is offered is of good quality. Consequently, you have to be attentive to the training you receive and always aim for the best

4- Increased exposure to screens

Studies show that prolonged use of screens creates psychophysiological disturbances, such as alterations in circadian rhythm, sleep patterns, and hormone levels.

If you are one of those people who works and studies in front of a computer, it is important to take the necessary considerations to avoid damage to health. For example, rest your eyes every so often, wear glasses for screens, go outside and get fresh air from time to time.

Prolonged exposure to screens affects eyesight, causes headaches, and even changes in sleep patterns

5- Risk of impersonation of students

The virtual education modality lends itself to other people impersonating students, especially in conducting assessments. Many institutions take this aspect seriously and force you to attend the institution’s exams

6- Less personal interaction

The virtual environment reduces interrelationships, either with the teacher or with classmates. It is usually a solitary activity. If there is socialization, it is reduced to the communication of subjects related to the study

7- Branches of education excluded.

There are some studies that, at the moment, cannot be implemented in the virtual environment. Especially those that require practical training, such as medicine or other scientific careers. The only option is to opt for a face-to-face version in these cases.

Virtual education: no better, no worse

With what has been said, we do not pretend to establish that virtual education is better or worse than face-to-face education. Each one has its advantages and disadvantages. It’s a matter of getting to know them and choosing the one that best suits us.

Sometimes it will not be possible to choose. But the ideal is to get the most out of it, whatever the teaching modality.

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