|Distance learning courses are becoming popular by the day owing to the flexibility and convenience it offers to the students as well as the teachers. Distance learning in the literal sense implies to that form of education in which the student may not be physically present on site to communicate and take lessons from the teachers and faculty members.
There are several institutes, universities and colleges that are offering courses available through the distance learning medium. Students may correspond through print or electronic media and other chatting ways to the teachers and fellow students to keep alive the traditional sense of classes and also to remain up to date with information and classroom tasks.
The history of distance learning can be traced back to the early part of the 17th century. Although the system was not so developed as it is today, the inherent meaning and mechanism was still very much similar to that of today. The father of Modern Distance Learning in America is credit to Charles Wedemeyer. He formulated the Articulated Instructional Media Project (AIM) to offer learning for an off campus group of students with the help of communications technologies.
One could comprehend the Distance learning methods by their nature and methods categorized as Synchronous and Asynchronous methods. While the former denotes learning processes taking place at different locations at the same time, the latter denotes to that learning processes that are taking place at different locations and at different time. Telephone, Video Conferencing and Web conferencing are the significant tools that help one on a synchronous online education method. And emailing, audio/ video cassettes and print materials are the major tools facilitating asynchronous distance learning methods.
The various Open Universities facilitate online education through the several online portals that are updated regularly and students can take the convenience of pursuing more than one course at a time owing to the flexible nature of the classes.