With access to the internet, you can sign up to learn about anything online. From YouTube videos to Instagram lives, there is no shortage of online learning opportunities.
For more academic subjects, you’ll want to be a part of something a bit more personalised and tailored to your interests. Apart from being able to meet learners from all over the world, there are many benefits to online learning with others through an accredited institution.
In this post, we will share a handful of the benefits of online learning communities.
1. Active online facilitator
In an in-person setting, you might not always have direct access to your course facilitator. While many professors offer open hours, you might not always feel comfortable chatting to them in person. This might be the case if you experiences strict and unapproachable teachers at school.
In an online learning environment, the relationship between an online facilitator and the learner is more informal. You can send them a message at any time, and they will get back to you when they can. The course facilitator acts more as a mentor or a guide than an authority figure.
An active course facilitator also creates a community. This is very different from a professor or lecturer having a one-way conversation with a class. Interactions might be shorter but more frequent. Since you have access to an ongoing discussion thread, you can ask questions at any time, instead of having to wait for a class or lecture.
2. Ongoing Engagement
You don’t have to wait for a specific class time to engage with your educators and peers, you can get to know them better over the discussion forum, or during group conversations and assignments.
No matter what time zone you are in, you can expect to hear a response shortly afterwards. This can also help you stay more engaged with the topic you are learning about.
Building a class community is one of the greatest advantages of online learning. You get to build on your knowledge, and engage with others, without having to feel silly about putting your hand up in a crowded classroom.
3. Online learning portfolio for future employers
In a traditional classroom setting, you might be given certain tasks to complete, tests to write or exams to pass. But are these a true reflection of how much you have engaged in the course? Anyone who has crammed before an exam might tell you otherwise.
With online learning, you get to put together an online portfolio which shows an accurate summary of how you engaged with the relevant topics and theories throughout the course.
This is not only helpful for those who struggle with the incredible pressure of exams. It also means you have solid evidence to show that you can apply your newfound skills and share your portfolio with future employers.
4. Asynchronous learning
Asynchronous learning means you can engage with the course content from anywhere, and at any time. You don’t have to worry about missing class, or not making it to class on time.
A key benefit of asynchronous online learning means that you can complete a course in your own time at a time that is most conventient to you. . You can also spend more time researching a specific topic, without worrying about falling behind, as you can manage your own schedule.
5. Cultural diversity
Studying in person offers wonderful social benefits because it provides opportunities for interactions outside of class. The downside is that unless you are attending a very cosmopolitan university, you’ll probably be engaging with people from similar backgrounds.
There is nothing inherently wrong with that, but a virtual environment allows you to engage with more diverse learners globally. These students might not even live on the same continent as you and could have opinions and experiences that differ from yours.
When studying topics like human behaviour, as well as business management, people management and coaching, these varying perspectives can add incredible value to your skills development and personal growth.
Reap the benefits of online learning at SACAP Global
At SACAP Global, we offer a user-friendly way for you to become part of a diverse online learning community. Whether you’re interested in Applied Psychology, Business Management or People Management, we offer a wide range of specialised online short courses.
All of these short courses are hosted on an interactive learning platform called OpenLearning, which is designed to facilitate engaging and fulfilling online learning experiences. Browse our full list of courses to find out more, and register to start your lifelong learning journey with SACAP Global!