Canada Association of Tourism Employees

Issues To Take into account When Selecting An On-line Course

eLearning during COVID-19

Each week we had different aspects of reading to focus on and different discussion topics posted on the course forum where we could share our thoughts and theories. My colleagues were different: people in their twenties and seventies, different nationalities, tastes, social and cultural backgrounds. What brought us together was a love of reading and literature. This diversity contributed enormously to our discussions, enriching and rotating our consciousness over and over again in the way that all the different ways of reading were introduced to us. After it was all over and we were back to our normal lives – maybe a little different – I thought that if I had taken a similar course at a local university, the learning outcome would most likely not have been the same. Finally, online learning brings together people who would otherwise never have exchanged a word directly in the same learning room. This is valuable and invaluable in the current economy.

Since then, I’ve been an advocate of online learning and suggest that it can be as challenging and stimulating as any regular course, promote the same sense of achievement, and, even if you never meet in person, provide an excellent opportunity to share ideas with others.

In a world that is becoming more and more digital and triggered by individual needs, company restrictions, market pressures and the ongoing pandemic, online education is at an all-time high.

Choosing the Right Online Course for Your Needs

Given the wide variety of offers, different delivery modes, structures, and restrictions, below are brief tips on choosing the best course for your needs.

1. Self-Paced Vs. Scheduled

Deciding between these two options is one of the top three considerations to consider when choosing an online course. It is important to check that the course can be taken at your own pace. This is the best option for people with irregular work hours or with a busy family plan as it will easily fit into your daily or weekly schedule. Just make sure you keep a somewhat steady pace so that you don’t have to keep going back to check what was previously covered and to devour your precious time. If the course follows a set schedule and you need to study a certain number of hours each week, you should be ready to reserve those hours. Just like regular courses, these can easily add up in courses if you are not diligent.

The course descriptions will likely include the number of study hours you expect to reserve for each unit.

2. Peer interaction

Just because you are alone at the computer doesn’t mean you have to study alone. If you miss having other students to talk to and are bored with content directed only at you, choose courses geared towards peer interaction. These often take the form of forum discussions in which the topic of the lesson is discussed by the students and conveyed by a tutor. This should be mentioned in the course description area. Some courses – for example, those focusing on language and drama – may even offer live courses through video conference rooms.

3. Accreditation and Certification

This is a complex consideration. If you are interested in taking a course to advance your career, find a job, or change career paths, choosing a course with accreditation and certification is the way to go. This will make it easier for the current or potential employer to review your skills when evaluating your application.

Most courses offer certifications, usually with a fee, if the content itself is offered for free. On the other hand, if you are studying for your own interest, a certificate is entirely optional. The general recommendation is to choose an accredited institution to ensure that what you are learning meets basic standards set by the government and to protect you from possible future problems that arise if you have to take a similar accredited course, to make up for this. You can find out if an institution is accredited by looking for a link to its accreditation status at the bottom of their website.

4. Course fee

Many of today’s courses are offered for free. It is possible to find free tracks from marketing to Java and Python programming. These may have certain restrictions, e.g. B. offering graded ratings and certificates of completion, or imposing an expiration date on access, but the content is free. Aside from that, it’s also possible to find rates in thousands of dollars or euros. These, in turn, are offered by reputable universities and learning centers, and students have the same privileges as regular campus privileges. The course quality is also seen as higher, but at a premium price.

Still, some courses on the same subject provide all of the materials necessary for a successful learning experience while others do not. If so, check the requirements list and see how easy it is to acquire the textbook or additional software you requested.

5. Reviews

As with any other product or service, relying on the description provided can lead to disappointment and more time looking for an alternative. Therefore, it is highly recommended that you check online for reviews every time you find an interesting course. A quick Google search can give you real testimonials from others who have taken the same course. However, be aware of the ratings that were published directly in the course descriptions of smaller platforms, as these can be easily manipulated.

6th institution

Different websites and institutions are aimed at different target groups. Be skeptical if the same institution offers game theory and crystal healing courses. These usually promote cheap courses, but practice is a clear indication that the platform is not focused on the course content on offer, but rather is interested in attracting the maximum number of students for a profit. Again, it doesn’t hurt to check their reputation online.

In summary, when choosing a course, you have to decide between:

  • Follow a set schedule or your own pace.
  • Interaction with other students or not;
  • Pursuing a certificate / degree or learning just for the skills;
  • Low, medium, or premium course fees;
  • Offers based on reviews;
  • Institutions by reputation.

Happy eLearning journey!

Post a Comment

You don't have permission to register