It is no secret that there has always been an ongoing debate regarding distance learning vs. attending a physical campus. My honest opinion is that distance learning is far more beneficial, in so many ways.
My views have not always made me very popular. I have also ended up unintentionally offending and insulting people who have spent many years studying at a physical campus. I would like to share my view points with you, and in doing so, I would like to apologise in advance to anybody I offend. Please bear in mind: I studied through distance learning, and therefore my judgement could be a bit biased.
Distance learning and preparing for the world of work
Firstly, I believe that the world of work is not always a warm and loving place. The world of work can be unfair, hard, and even cruel. Students who enter the working world after studying full-time at a residential college or university often experience culture shock. At a physical campus, you may have friends around you, and it is often a comfortable and fun environment. When you enter into a job, you will soon discover that you are unable to choose the people you work with. It may not be comfortable, and you will have to get on with all sorts of different people. Distance learning removes students from their comfort zones. You are alone with your books – left to fend for yourself, so to speak. Thus, I believe that distance learning prepares students for the real world of work.
Most jobs are going to require you to fend for yourself, be autonomous, and take initiative. Distance learning can teach you all of these things, so that when you enter into the job market, you will not need to spend extra time acquiring all these foreign skills.
Distance learning and skills development
At a physical campus, a fixed timetable is followed, whereas studying via distance learning requires that you follow your own schedule. The time-management skills that you will acquire if you choose to study via distance learning will prove to be invaluable. You will also be forced to learn self-discipline, which is a skill that can be used throughout the rest of your life, both in the working world as well as in your personal life.
Studying via distance learning also gives you the opportunity to study and work at the same time. This can be tough, but the truth is that life is always going to require you to balance a few things at a time. Studying via distance learning provides you with great practice for balancing all the different components of your life. Furthermore, having the opportunity to work and study at the same time allows students to gain that much-needed working experience. Building up work experience while you are studying will give you a head start in your career.
Distance learning and safety
It is not uncommon for physical campuses to have violence, theft and other criminal activities taking place on campus. With distance learning, these potential threats never need to enter your mind. You will always be safe, as you can study from home.
Just by looking at job advertisements, it will be clear to you that companies are looking for prospective employees who have working experience in conjunction with relevant qualifications. To wait until you are finished with your studies before gaining work experience is going to place you at a disadvantage. Distance learning, on the other hand, gives you the means to obtain these advantages right from the get-go.
I think everybody should go the distance with distance learning. You will acquire a vast range of skills, competencies and self-awareness – far beyond what you will acquire if you attend a physical campus. That is my opinion, and you are welcome to feel differently.
“If I had eight hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend six sharpening my axe.” – Abraham Lincoln