After the massive outbreak of coronavirus in 2019 the whole world was shut down and the students were only dependent on online learning platforms for their studies. Along with the school students, the higher education system also suffered a lot. So, the only option left was online learning platforms. There are many online learning platforms that have different criteria for teaching and have become popular in their own ways.
Online learning platforms can be considered as a boon to the higher education system during the covid-19 outbreak but the consequences related to learning through these platforms can’t be ignored. These platforms provide the students with the lectures and the materials at a low cost and let the students study at their own pace and understand the concept. But the distractions associated with learning online are way more than the offline classes and one needs to concentrate more while studying online through these platforms.
There is significant demand among the students’ many online platforms have decided to offer free access to the services, Including platforms like Bjyus, Unacademy, Vedantu, and a lot more.
There are many platforms like Coursera, Skillshare, LinkedIn Learning, Udacity, Udemy, edX, and many more, which provide courses in basically every field at an affordable rate for students all over the globe. The surge for such platforms has highly increased since the lockdown has occurred after the pandemic. The students can easily learn anything in any field as per their interest.
Apart from these online learning platforms, many universities like Stanford University, MIT, The University of Texas at Austin, National University Singapore, IIT Madras, IIT Bombay, IIT Roorkee, IIIT-Delhi, Shiv Nadar University, Great Lakes Institute of Management, and many more are offering thousands of courses through distance learning programs. Some universities in collaboration with online learning platforms have recently launched a distance learning Masters’s program for students all over the world.
Some of the online learning platforms
- Upgrad: It is India’s largest educational technology platform especially for higher education. They provide various free courses along with Masters’s programs such as MBA, PG diplomas in data science, Some paid courses related to the latest technology like machine learning data science and various other fields.
- Udemy: Udemy is an American massive online course provider which aims at professional adults and students. This ed Tech platform was founded in 2010 by Eren Bali, Gagan Biyani, and Oktay Caglar. This platform has an enormous number of courses and instructors from various countries that teach in different languages. As of June 2021, the platform had 44 million students With 183000 teachers teaching in 75 different languages.
- Coursera: Coursera is an American massive online course provider company that was founded by Computer science professors of Stanford University in 2012. This platform works with various Universities and organizations And provides the students with numerous courses, certifications, and degrees in various fields. Coursera Provides various online degree programs like Masters in collaboration with universities like Yale University, University of London, Duke University, IBM, etc.
- Skillshare: This is an American online community for a group of people who want to learn from Educational videos. This platform not only provides courses regarding the educational background but also provides courses related to one’s interests like fine art, music, web development, cooking, editing, graphics etcetera.
- BYJU’S: Byju’s is an Indian multinational educational technology company, headquartered in Bangalore, India. This platform provides classes for school-level students, preparation for competitive programs such as JEE mains & advance and NEET. They also provide Test preparation for IAS. Byju’s has emerged as one of the largest Ed Tech company 2021 their network was 16.5 billion dollars making it the world’s Most valuable educational technology company.
Also read: Top 10 Online Learning Platforms
Benefits of online learning platforms
- Convenient: Online classes are way more convenient in the way that they provide online notes, materials, and learning at their own pace. In online learning, one can take classes anywhere without the hassle of traveling to colleges and schools. A student can view a video Many times until and unless all the concepts of the students are not clear.
- Flexible: Online classes are flexible since a student need not travel kilometers in order to reach the college. A student may not find a teacher at 3:00 a.m. in the night but can possibly take a class any time on an online learning platform. This possibly makes an online platform way more flexible than traditional classes.
- Affordable: The online learning platforms are a lot cheaper than traditional colleges and schools. An online platform like udemy provides courses like Data Structures and Algorithms at a rate of 5.4 dollars that is a lot cheaper. The students also save up by the learn from online platforms as they need not pay for the meals at the colleges and there is no cost of traveling.
- Interactive: Online classes are more interactive than traditional offline classes since a student has one-to-one interaction with the teacher. The live classes provide a lot of interaction with the teachers.
- Greater learning opportunities: The online learning platform provides students with various learning opportunities in different fields. Suppose, a student wants to learn french then he can enroll for a course in some ed-tech platform but to learn in an offline class one needs to go through a lot of hassle since many schools and colleges don’t offer courses for foreign languages in many underdeveloped nations.
Drawbacks of online learning platforms
- Sense of isolation: One might feel isolated while learning through online platforms. It all depends on the student since many students like to work independently but others feel like working in a community with their fellow mates and easy access to the professors. Online platforms should support the social aspect of learning as in traditional classes.
- Self-discipline: The student should have a sense of Self Discipline while learning to the online platforms because online platforms can be way more destructive than it appears. Since the student is always in touch with the internet so social media becomes a big distraction during online study. So and need for discipline is very important during online classes.
- Training for instructors: The teacher needs to have a good understanding of the online educational platforms in order to make a proper course for a particular subject, because of these traditional classes running through the ages In the whole world, the Instructors never got exposure to the online learning community. So teachers definitely need proper training in online Technology like editing videos creating animations using graphics etc.
- Screen time and technical issues: Major drawback of the online learning platform is an increase in screen time for both teachers and students. The online classes are associated with many technical issues Like the unclear video, audio disruption, Screen not being visible, etc.
By considering all the benefits and drawbacks of online learning platforms, it is very clear that it is highly advantageous and distracting at the same time. A student can learn a lot from an ed-tech platform but at the same time, he needs to keep himself away from all the distractions. COVID 19 has opened a great path for online learning platforms and for some they have proved to be highly effective.