Many times, due to reasons more than one, people are not able to carry on an on-campus, full-time degree. Some do not have the means to move to another city where the desired degree can be studied, some are working and can not afford to quit their job; Whatever may the reason be, distance learning is a tool to fill the gap between a student and an institution.
Distance education in India
Distance education means learning from an instructor or teacher who is physically distant. It is considered ideal for working professionals who want to enhance their skills but don’t want to quit their job and deprive themselves of the income; it is also useful for students who for some reason cannot attend regular Classes. Delivered in a regular and coherent manner, the study material is given online or through the post and in some cases, both. Primarily, the base of distance education was the printed books which were sent by post to the students (or in some cases the student had to pick the study materials up from the centre), but with technical evolution, the internet has taken over. Most distance learning programs now provide online study material and virtual class rooms, the students can interact with their teachers through video calls.
Advantages of distance learning
- It is very flexible. The students can have access to the classroom and have an active discussion with their instructor without being bound to a specific place or time.
- It creates scope for a more personalised student-teacher relationship. Students get more attention.
- The distance learning courses are more economically feasible in comparison to regular ones.
Things to keep in mind while opting for distance learning
Any institute, regular or distance needs to be approved by University Grants Commission (UCG), and the part of UCG approving the distance and online institutes is Distance Education Bureau (DEB). You can visit the website of DEB and see the list of the institutions approved by it under the head of ODLs (online and distance learning institutes).
A student can not pursue two degrees simultaneously, and if a student is found doing so, one degree gets cancelled. However, students can pursue two programs together if both of them are not degrees, for instance, A student studying B.com at an institution he can simultaneously pursue a diploma/ certificate course in creative writing.