The concept of doing a course through distance education has gained momentum in recent years. Distance education is quite literally imparting education from a distance, where the student and the teacher may not necessarily live in the same place or interact regularly. A student living in Orissa can pursue a degree from Mumbai University under its distance education system.
It is a more convenient method of securing formal higher education, especially for the less advantaged sections of the society or for those living in places devoid of sufficient education institutes. However it has also become popular with the relatively well to do thanks to the convenience and the wider options that it offers.
Distance education is provided on academic, technical and professional subjects. Such a mode of education has many advantages, the primary one being that individuals from any corner of the country can pursue higher education in a course of their choice. Secondly, these courses are much cheaper than the full time courses, facilitating people from low income groups with a very economical alternative to get education. This is also the reason why such courses have become extremely popular in the rural areas.
Distance learning courses are equally popular in the urban areas as they not only enhance qualifications but also allow the students to engage in other activities simultaneously. Most people who take up distance learning also work alongside making correspondence courses popular among working professionals at all stages of their careers.
The best part about distance education is the flexibility that it offers. One can study at one’s own time and convenience. One need not commute; there is no peer pressure of the kind that would occur in a regular class; students can make their own time table, do their own research and study on their own.
Since it is a self paced learning, it is also extremely useful for show learners for whom it not only reduces stress but also brings in satisfaction.
Many students who are unable to clear their exams opt for a course in an open university to continue their education further.
Those who shift places regularly can also make use of this mode of learning to avoid any compromise on their studies, as such courses can be pursued from anywhere in the country.
It is also a great way to do two separate courses together. For example, if one is doing a diploma in Fashion Design and still wants to get a degree alongside, he / she can enroll for a degree course under distance learning and do the two simultaneously. Distance learning comes very handy when you want to get education without really going to a college, in case of many married women who find this mode extremely useful.
It provides an opportunity to up grade your skills, especially if you need to but cannot attend a full time course due to certain compulsions like working for a living or any other responsibility. In most cases the course fee is almost half of the full time courses, which is an advantage. Also, in some ways the learner is independent and has an opportunity to widen his or her perspective. The student is not bound by the instructor’s perspective, which happens in the case of a full time, class room learning. As the course material is only an outline of the syllabus, with some pointers the learner has to run around to build upon the course, which helps him develop his own perspective. The recent trend shows a great surge in the number of people going in for the MBA degree through distance education.