When the Covid-19 pandemic hit the world, it impacted several aspects of life negatively. It is difficult to imagine which aspects of life have not been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The pandemic has caused a lot of disruption in many events of socialization. The impact on education was no different.
Online education is a method of providing education through the internet by conducting live virtual classes. Teachers and students can easily share videos, PDFs, podcasts, and pictures within seconds.
Online education allows teachers to reach students within seconds. Online education also allows children to learn who may not be able to enroll in traditional classes. Online education provides numerous benefits such as flexible learning schedules, lower prices, more accessibility, and much more.
Online Education v/s Traditional Education
Currently, millions of students have enrolled for at least one online course. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit the world, the popularity of online education rose to soaring heights. The format of online education presents a different experience than traditional education.
As a result, both are adopted and declined due to their significant merits and demerits. While online education offers a convenient, cost-effective study method, traditional methods are preferred to maintain the sincerity and fitness of students.
Positive Impacts of Online Education
There are several factors of online education that promote the adoption of this system worldwide. The new era of online education has completely changed the outlook of the entire education system.
Apart from low cost and easy accessibility, people have witnessed several additional benefits that may expand the adoption of online education in the coming years.
- Lower Cost of Education: When it comes to online education, students can spend a lot less money.Since the schools have closed during the pandemic, the cost of infrastructure maintenance has decreased. Online education has resulted in a reduction of school fees making education more economical. The associated cost of transportation, books, and stationary charges reduced as students began learning from their homes.
- Increased Accessibility from Any Place: In online education, children can attend classes regardless of their location. Schools can conveniently reach students who live in distant places. Online education allows students to overcome their geographical limitations and gain education benefits with comfort.
- Abundant Learning Opportunities: In online education, teachers can offer better ways of delivering lessons to students. Teachers can use a variety of tools like PDFs, podcasts, videos, etc. Online education allows teachers to go beyond the use of textbooks and include online resources in their lessons.
- Improved Communication: In traditional classroom education, children can interact with the teachers and other fellow students during designated school hours. On the other hand, online education enables students to communicate and ask for assistance regarding any matter with their teachers through live chat, phone calls, and emails.
- Variety of Courses to choose from: There are several online platforms providing free education. These platforms also offer certification in different subjects, from career certificate courses to doctoral programs. Online education presents students with a higher number of options to choose from according to their will.
Negative Impacts of Online Education
- Exposure to screens can cause health issues among children: Students have to attend online classes for extended periods. Sitting for prolonged hours becomes very exhausting for children. Some students may end up developing eyesight issues. Moreover, watching the screen for long periods causes headaches in many children. Sometimes students may even develop posture habits that are not healthy due to prolonged screen time.
- Network and other technical issues: The most common demerit of online education is its dependence on the internet. Despite the innovations in network technology, internet connectivity in many smaller towns and villages is still a critical issue. Many students reside at locations where there is not any proper network coverage.
- Increased responsibility for parents: Online education affects children and increases the burden on the children’s parents. Parents are required to constantly pay attention to their kids, whether they are being attentive in the class or not. Moreover, parents also have to resolve any internet and other technical issues faced by their children. These extra efforts have increased the burden on the parents.
- Interaction and Socializing: The Covid-19 pandemic has put social interaction on hold for everyone especially, children. Not having friendly interactions has negatively impacted the mental health of young children. Not being able to interact in real life has affected children’s personality development. Many subjects taught to children require physical interaction. Lack of interaction and new experiences hinders children’s social development.
- Lack of Personalized Teaching: In offline classes, the teachers could better tend to the issues and difficulties of children. Teachers cannot personally interact with children provided with online education as they cannot interact physically with children.
- Lack of Affordability: Online education has been an additional burden for parents and children who cannot afford to pay for smartphones and laptops. Moreover, online education requires internet connectivity to reach out to teachers through computers, laptops, smartphones, etc. Children from families with poor economic backgrounds may not be able to afford such devices, due to which they end up missing out on classes. It has ultimately hampered the studies of the children and increased the burden on parents.
The online education system has been a powerful tool at the time of the pandemic. Online education is a great way of learning during the pandemic.
However, the traditional education system has always been and always will be the best way of learning for children to grow socially and mentally. Online education has many advantages, and there has been a rise in demand for online education during the COVID-19 epidemic.
It has altered the landscape of the education system. According to Astute Analytica, the online education market would grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9% during the forecast period from 2021 to 2027.
Despite the many adverse effects of online education on younger children, the demand for online education is still rising. Online education provides many benefits without leaving the comfort of homes during a difficult time.
For the time being, online education is the only practical choice during the pandemic.