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Concept of E-Learning Solutions: Better or Worse
Increasing demand for corporate training as well as the logistical headaches associated with assembling instructors and students at a single location has been the main reason for the birth of E-learning services. In an attempt to avoid the logistical complications of on location training, many companies have opted for a virtual approach to training. Stand-alone CD-ROM modules, enterprise-wide, Web-based programs comprised of hundreds of courses custom-designed for thousands of users all fall under the concept of E-Learning. However, thereíre many whoíre skeptical of E-learning services and believes it to be just a lot of hype.
E-learning is basically a new or different form of learning. E-learning enables learners to combine traditional methods of learning with the internet facilities. In fact, some learners opt for a mix of face-to-face experiences with network-based education. However, like everything, E-Learning programs have its pros and cons. It has been found that often, E-learning provides a more individualized, self-paced, self-directed learning experience.
A main advantage of E-learning services is flexibility. With E-learning services there is no need to go to an institution in order to learn a subject or a skill. Also, you can work as well as study because E-Learning solutions donít have fixed classroom timings and therefore youíve the freedom to learn at your own pace and at your convenience. E-Learning solutions also have the flexibility of being CD-ROM-based, Network-based, Intranet-based or Internet-based.
Itís a hands-on learning experience without the disadvantages like crowded classrooms or a huge auditorium, where your questions and views might not get addressed. Another advantage is the amount of time you can save. With E-learning services you can save the time as well as costs that youíd otherwise spend commuting to your classes. But, youíll however miss out on the experiences that come with campus life and the social interaction that are a part of traditional classrooms and institutions. And with E-learning solutions, you can learn as and when you need it and your learning options arenít constrained or limited by your geographic location.
Another unique feature of E-learning services is that the instruction can be more personalized and flexible. Therefore itís more effective for particular kinds of learners like, shy, reflective, language challenged or slow. Within E-learning the focus is on the students and not on the instructor.
However, like everything, it has its share of disadvantages as well. For example, E-learning services that have ineffective online instructors are not very useful. Also, many instructors find it difficult to use E-learning services for traditional content. And itís at the same time more time consuming as instructors have to provide individualized feedback. Also, often there is the matter of equipment needs of students and learning providers as well as the technical training and support of learners and instructors.
Another issue that needs to be addressed is the academic honesty of online students, especially when it comes to testing and assessment. In this matter the absence of face-to-face interaction is a big set back. Another fact is that E-learning services are not available to all learners from all walks of life, because it needs special infrastructure to support it as well as new skills and responsibilities from the students.
However, E-learning services provided by offshore E-Learning solutions provider companies have now become more universal, and is now giving people and organizations the competitive edge that allows them to stay ahead of the quickly varying global information economy. In the long run, this will help the Indian economy grow, since many companies have now started to outsource their E-learning services to India.
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