Tuesday, 18 February 2014

What is Distance Education?

#Distance_Education – This word is not unfamiliar for us in this era. As the word suggests, it is #education that we can get when we are in a quite large distance from the actual source of knowledge, by simply sitting at our own place, engaging in some other works. #Universities are considered to be the largest and highest institutions of higher #education in our country. There are quite high number of #Universities in #India. But sometimes people cannot go to these #Universities or #colleges to get their higher education because of a number of difficulties such as their personal reasons, social issues, economic issues etc. For such persons, #distance mode of #education is a great blessing, as they can get their #degree, post #graduation etc without spending much money if they are economically backward, without leaving their job if they are employed and also a variety of personal reasons.

As I said earlier, the number of Universities in our country is very large and more and more private institutes are applying for deemed university status, they are looking for getting money by simply offering some programs in #distance mode. They are “#degree / #diploma mills” just generating thousands of #degree certificates and giving that to students. The quality of #education we get from such institutions will be very poor. So, If you are thinking of joining any course through #distance_education mode, here are some important steps which you should keep in mind while choosing the right #university or institution.

1. QUALITY – Understand that we are giving our valuable years and hard-earned money to this institutions to develop our skills, knowledge and to get a great career, so always look for a quality program. Nowadays people select #distance_education courses from institutions which gives certificates without any hard exams or tough #assignments. If you are seriously looking for a good career, always look for quality courses from quality institutions.

2. STUDY MATERIALS – This is another important factor that need to be considered while selecting the institution and course. Try to choose the institution which provides the entire course material. I saw some of the study materials given by a #distance_education institute, which simply gave 2 small books and says to refer other books. That is a time consuming process to find reference materials they suggested.

3. FLEXIBILITY – In most of the cases, the #distance mode courses are chosen by #working_professionals who wants to enhance their subject knowledge and career. So it is good to choose a course that won’t affect your current work. If your job doesn’t give you the right to take a break for attending classes or exams, there is a chance of dropping out from the program.

4. COST – The bitter fact is that most of the #distance_education courses are costly. So it is always good to compare some #distance_education institutes before joining the course, but always stick on to the quality of #education.

5. STUDY CENTER NETWORK – It is always recommended to check whether the institute have a branch or contact point near by your area, otherwise communication with the institution will be cumbersome. Centralized communication will always create delays and issues.

6. CONTACT CLASSES – Even though the crux of #distance_education is self learning, it is good if the institution offers some contact classes in your city. This will immensely help the learners to clear their doubts by interacting with faculty and other students.

7. DURATION – Even if u were a bright student during your school or college days, you will find it difficult to complete your #distance_education course within stipulated time. This is because during your school or college days, #education was your primary focus, but now you have some other things having priority than education, may be your job, or may be your personal life ! So check whether the course provides you the flexibilty in the duration.

8. EXAM CENTERS – Please make sure that the institution have examination centers in your city. Travelling a lot of distance for writing the examination is not good and sometimes it won’t be feasible as well.

9. TRANSFER – For a working professional, its quite common to relocate to some other cities or states. If the institution where you pursue your course won’t allow you to change center, that will be a block for you from relocating. So better choose institutions having presence in all over the country and we can get transfer from one center to another.

10. Legal Status / Validity / Recognition – Even though I have given this point at the last, it doesn’t mean that this is having the low priority  Please make sure that the course and institution you choose should be valid and recognized by other institutions, private sector, public sector enterprises. Otherwise, your money and time will be wasted.

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