This week we talked about how technology has afforded many more opportunities in education MOOCs, MIT and others’ availability of open online courses, distance education programs. Our SIS program is predominantly distance even if you are, like I am, an on-campus student, but I do like the fact that although I have had to take most of my classes online. The online classes are not merely read this and turn this in. We meet through Blackboard Collaborate and have weekly synchronous classes.
What was actually surprising to me this week in our education informatics class was that we did not discuss the downside of online learning, and while I was looking up information on online learning, I came across this: Online Education Vs Online Dating: 9 Similarities. When we discussed social media and kids’ use of the internet, we discussed some of the downsides and how people need to have some information literacy skills. What I thought was interesting about this comparison between online dating and education is that with online dating, people are aware that WYSIWYG is not always the case, so I just wanted to bring up that this also may not be the case with online education.
There are several for profit institutions that have taken advantage of the easier accessibility of online/distance education. While we have a great SIS program, many of the online programs do not have the same synchronous types of meetings that we have, and the statistics for the for profit schools are alarming in their students’ debt accumulation and job opportunities, so just like in online dating, when choosing a school, one should exercise those digital literacy skills, and stick to the old adage of “buyer beware.”
Here are a few articles about this topic:The Trouble With Online Education
Students at For-Profit Colleges Earn Less, Study Says
How Online College Could Hurt Graduation Rates
The High Price of For-Profit Colleges