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Fact or Fiction? Debunking Myths About Online Learning

July 06, 2017 by Miranda Lim |

Illustration - person at fork in road, one sign points to Online, other points to On CampusIf you’ve never taken an online class before, you might be skeptical of the experience. Here are a few misconceptions we’d like to clear up to set the record straight.

On-campus classes are higher quality than their online counterparts: FICTION 

UNC Greensboro’s online courses meet the same rigorous academic standards followed by our on-campus classes. You’ll be challenged to master new skills, expand your subject matter knowledge, and engage in critical thinking, application, and discussion, just like you would in a traditional classroom setting. Every class requires that students meet key learning objectives—taking a course online means that the delivery format has changed, but not the commitment to providing you with an exceptional educational experience.

Virtual education is isolating and unengaging: FICTION

Enrolling in an online class does not mean you’ll be taking your academic journey alone. Some courses integrate synchronous class sessions, meaning you’ll meet at a scheduled time with peers and your instructor virtually through chat platforms, video conferencing, or other online methods. Even if your course is asynchronous, meaning you won’t meet at a scheduled time with peers and your instructor, you can communicate through email or schedule virtual sessions to connect over the web.

Within the online learning environment, you’ll experience course content presented in methods other than the traditional face-to-face lecture style. Videos, images, ebooks, and other types of multimedia make a virtual classroom come to life and offer a truly engaging learning experience.

Online learning isn’t as effective as traditional classroom learning: FICTION

Online classes utilize technology to present course content in diverse formats for a variety of preferences and learning styles. Every student is different, so having the opportunity to engage in the course material in ways that suit you best can make online learning even more effective than a traditional classroom experience. For example, if you prefer to learn by listening, watching a lecture video may be an ideal fit for you. Alternatively, if you prefer to learn by doing, downloading a transcript of the video’s audio and annotating the text with your notes may help you master the content.

Online learning is as good as learning on campus, and for many students it’s an even better fit: FACT

Of course, online learning isn’t for everyone—but, if you have a busy schedule, live far from campus, and need a flexible, customizable learning experience, online programs may be exactly what you’re looking for.

Balancing a traditional class schedule with your other responsibilities, like work, family, friends, and hobbies, can be difficult. Taking classes online can help you fit your education into your life, not the other way around. Prioritize your to-do list and practice consistent time management. You’ll be set for success.

Do you have the skills and motivation to thrive in a digital learning environment? Take our quiz to find out!

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If you think online learning is the right choice for you, check out our online programs. Whether you’re interested in business, information technology, public health, philosophy, or another field, there’s something for everyone!

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