Just my Thoughts

Online Learning

What do you think about online learning? Colleges have been utilizing online resources for years. Many are better known for their online courses than their brick and mortar location. Some of the most prestigious universities in the country, such as Stanford, allow people to take any course online for free (no degree).

I’ve taken online courses. Mine were non-credit bearing classes along the lines of continuing education credits. While I loved the flexibility that is inherent in online learning, I found the personal planning and discipline to be difficult at times.

Now, let me ask what do you think of the prospect of online learning for high school students? Many high schools across the US are using online learning for everything from academic intervention to credit recovery to actual credit courses.

Locally, summer school has offered an online option for a couple years. There is still a standard credit recovery summer school also. This allows more students to be served, offering more courses, with fewer teachers in summer school. I heard one local summer school principal say they were offering 25 courses with only 4 teachers.

Another consideration is electives. As schools, at least in NYS, work with less money, no one wants to offer fewer electives. The non-core courses are what allow students to set themselves apart from other students. Online learning may be an option to help in this area.

What do you think? Would you want your child to participate in credit recovery (meaning they did not pass the course in regular class) online? Would you allow your student to take electives online? Realize none of these are without attendance requirements.

4 thoughts on “Online Learning

  1. People learn differently. One guy I knew would just read technical books and pass really nasty Microsoft Certification Tests as if he was working with the technology all of his life. Never failed one. Some prefer to learn visually, some by hearing material, some by doing it, some by writing it down (kinesthetically). Have someone evaluate whether your kid would be likely to thrive in that environment. Maybe a good tutoring company or individual (very experienced) tutor/teacher. I would think that a good guidance counselor should be able to point you to a couple of resources, or, if you’re lucky, do an evaluation him/herself.

    1. The different types of learning are reasons that I am not totally sure about a school district looking into online learning. It will be hit and miss.

  2. I’m in graduate school and have never taken an online course. I like the classroom, but I have taken a couple hybrid courses that have worked out really well. I’m enrolled in one for spring semester too that I’m hoping goes as smoothly as the last two hybrids I took. It may be my new favorite way to taking classes with a family at home.

    1. Beth – I have taken several online courses. As I said, these were continuing ed types of courses (grantwriting and now I can’t even remember the other one). I just worry that online courses for high school use – whether for credit recovery or academic intervention or first credit – only look at students one way whereas a human teacher can address differences in students.

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