Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Considering Online K-12 Classes? Key Tips to Keep in Mind

The rapid growth of online K-12 education has made all public high-school students progressively demand to take at least one class online. Students believe taking K-12 classes online will help anyone, easily register for such classes overcoming geographical boundaries. In various U.S. states, students are emphasizing on the usage of various mobile phone applications to upload courses in their entirety on their iPhones and BlackBerrys. According to Evergreen Education Group (2011 report), "Nationwide, an estimated 250,000 students are enrolled in to full-time virtual schools, up 40% in the last three years."

However, all K-12 schools and colleges should keep a few tips in mind before starting to introduce online classes for the benefit of the student community.

Students Vary As Do Their Needs

People who come to learn have their own interests and requirements to meet. It is misleading to believe that online classes or courses will be a solution to all K-12 education. However, the fact remains that an increasing number of students will encounter at least one online course during their high school or college progression.

What is the Respective Quality of Available Educational Options?

Before organizing and scheduling classes over the internet, one should be aware of the strengths and weaknesses of the employed academic staff. For example, after introducing online classes, one may find the class attendance level to be rapidly decreasing because of the inability of the teachers and administrative staff to resolve student queries.

What Courses Work Well Online and Which Do Not?

A math class or a statistics class can work well online compared to a literature class where face-to-face discussions and high interactivity is desired. Science classes that mostly include practical experimentations may also lose something noteworthy in online translation. Students may prefer to learn some subjects face-to-face in the presence of skilled teachers rather than study them online.

What is the Motivation for Taking Online Courses?

Online courses are ideal for students who are unable to attend traditional classroom-styled teaching because of health issues. Additionally, motivated students may desire to learn about a subject that is usually not taught within a traditional school curriculum. However, there may be some students who prefer online courses just because it offers them the freedom to learn at their convenience. Now, this may not be a good motivating factor for online education, because according to online learning supporters, students who do best in online K-12 classes are actually highly motivated, attentive, and disciplined.

What are the Student's Strengths and Weaknesses?

Not all students will be highly tech-savvy or capable of tackling online coursework. Thus, making all K-12 classes online may hamper such student's motivation and zeal to learn...!!