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e-Learning Basics

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Student on laptop computer
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What is e-Learning?:

e-Learning, or electronic learning, is any type of educational instruction that occurs through the internet. Whenever you watch a training video online, participate in an academic discussion board, or enroll in a virtual class, you’re engaged in e-learning.

There are a lot of names for e-learning. It is often called:
  • distance learning
  • distance education
  • virtual learning
  • online learning
  • online education
  • web-based training

Types of e-Learning:

There are three primary types of e-learning.

Informal e-learning – A growing number websites offer e-learning material at no cost. Informal e-learning such as studying OpenCourseWare material can help you improve your knowledge and polish your skills.

Corporate e-learning – Many business train their employees through e-learning programs. Corporate e-learning can be used to prepare professionals for success in their industry and keep their knowledge current.

Academic e-learning – Hundreds of e-learning degree programs offer a way for students to earn an accredited degree through the internet.

Pros and Cons of e-Learning:

e-Learning offers several advantages. Students participating in e-learning programs are often able to set their own schedules and work at their own pace. The learning experience can be easily enhanced with multimedia such as videos, interactive websites, and real-time conferencing with experts from anywhere in the world. Additionally, e-learning programs are often priced less than their physical counterparts.

Some students do prefer the face-to-face interaction and real-life discussions found only in the classroom. The independent nature of e-learning can also make it difficult for students to stay on target.

Getting Started with e-Learning:

Interested in giving e-learning a try? Consider taking a free online class, enrolling in an online college degree program, or asking your employer about available training opportunities.

e-Learning can be a smart way to improve your marketability and knowledge, on your own time and at your own pace.
  1. About.com
  2. Education
  3. Distance Learning
  4. Distance Learning 101
  5. e-Learning Basics - What is e-Learning, Getting Started with e-Learning

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