Online Learning and Student Success (Summary and Reflection)

Could online education really replace the traditional classroom setup? This is the issue tackled by Mark Charles in his essay Online Learning and Student Success. It was a great talk of town that computerized instructions (from World Wide Web) could make learning better, because people themselves could transform to become student-centered educators, at the same time, it brings away people from traditional classrooms. However, according to his essay, the SAT/SAT-1 scores of Senior High School in the age of computer (year 1972) had declined implying that even computer age education is still beset with problems; because, not everyone could excel as far as computers are being operated. Mark Charles also discussed how students who are underqualified to enter college see online programs or courses as a key to have a diploma. It was also cited the name William Draves who believes that digital learning would draw to greater the student’s ability because it is personalized and it has more courses to offer; feedbacks are given and all tasks are tailored to the student’s need. However, this could be really hard because of the population that would be taking different or multiple exams. On the part of isolated learners or those who are highly motivated and self-directed, this might be favorable. However, Draves’s viewpoint was contradicted by David Noble who thinks that digital learning imposes uniformity in curricula, taking the intellectual property of teachers for the institutions to be given. Noble supported this argument by setting an example of students who protested that they had come to campus for classroom experiences. Of course, not most of the mainstream would opt to attend traditional college and university than being deprived from the experiences that would be gained. He said that individual teachers are the one who must take responsibility for the curriculum and how it is taught to learners.

It is undeniable that technology has been indispensable part of all aspects of human life – education, entertainment, medicine, establishment, transportation etc. In just a day, removing this technology might stop our planet from revolving. People of all ages would find it painful beyond assault to live without it.  In connection to that, I may not be the right person to say the right words, but I strongly disagree that digital learning could replace real-life classroom experiences. Social skills would never be developed in the said program unless it provides opportunities to have video calls with the other students. Another point is, the spirit of cooperative learning would no more be present, because it only provides solitude to the students to work independently. How would values integration and moral relativism be processed as well? There would be no actualization of skills to be developed. I believe students might also cheat the compliance of requirements since the teacher would never have the chance to see their progress from time to time in person. Maybe, it could be used as a source to enrich and deepen the students’ learning, and not totally replace the teachers because of its ambitious attempt to do so.

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