The future is online! No?

Good Day!

Online learning has grown immensely in the past several years. In addition to the “online universities”, we have seen growth in online courses for undergraduates and more online programs offered through universities. So what does this all mean? We have self check-out at almost every store, is higher education next? Will we one day be “self check-out” students?

If so, is this a positive or negative move in education?

Below I have posted a few questions in order to begin this discussion. I am currently pursuing my Ed.D. through an online program at East Tennessee State University. This is an assignment to encourage leadership action using a form of technology, in this case a blog!

Questions:

  1. Is the learning experience in an online distance learning class the same as an on campus classroom? For this question “learning experience” can be defined as the way a student comprehends the content, if the student is able to utilize/apply the content after the course- are outcomes different?
  2. Will we do everything from a computer? Siri, where are we going? The real question: Will online classes be the new way to receive an education? If, so what does that mean for faculty, administrators, and students?
  3. Growing up, going to college was “revered” and “fantasized.” You would move away, live in the dorm, join clubs, tailgate, etc. The possibilities were endless! This experience was part of my social adult development, we all tell stories about “when I was in college.” However, what would have been different if I took all online courses? I could have worked full-time and not taken out so many loans which would be a positive, but my “experience” would have been very different -If the direction of online learning is eventually making the “classroom” obsolete, then what will happen to the experiences young adults could have?
  1. Referencing question 3, not everyone is going to have a “traditional” college experience so to speak. I was very lucky.  However, online learning can benefit many learners, who are these learners?
  2. Can online learning support a university’s mission? Would the mission be different?

I look forward to everyone’s responses!

Your online learner,

-Tess