Online Course


What is an Online Course?

Otherwise known as an “online class” an online course is a form of education carried out through a connection to the internet. With an online course, a teacher may deliver training in a range of formats, using tools like live video streaming, recorded videos, eBooks, webinars, and quizzes or tests.

Online courses are usually accessible to a wide range of students, regardless of their location. Some are available for free, whereas others have a price tag. Popular for their flexibility, many online courses allow students to access self-paced learning, so they can gain an education while simultaneously working or dealing with other responsibilities.

There has also never been a better time to start an online course. Right now one has an ability to deliver a high-quality online course using one of often fairly affordable online course platforms and easily share one’s knowledge with thousands of students around the world.

Are There Different Types of Online Course?

All online courses take place with an internet connection, but there are different kinds of classes to consider. For instance:

  • Video courses: Video lessons are among the simplest types of online courses. An educator records videos to guide a student through a topic or idea. Often, students are allowed to access these videos asynchronously. In other words, the course isn’t delivered in real-time, but instead offered for users to access whenever they choose.
  • Interactive online courses: Interactive online courses invest more in engaging the students involved. You might have quizzes you can take, or tests to help determine how well you’re learning. An interactive online course may include more back-and-forth between students and teachers too.
  • Webinars: Webinars are a kind of interactive online course where educators usually connect frequently with their students through chat, email, and video. Though webinars are less flexible than other kinds of online courses, as you need to be available to attend sessions at specific times, they’re often very engaging.
  • One on one training: Some online course providers walk their students through the training experience on a one-to-one basis. Though this is less common than group learning, it can be ideal for students who need extra help grasping a topic.
  • Self-directed learning: With self-directed learning, students read articles, explore videos, and take tests in their own time. An educator may be available to answer questions, but the student is mostly responsible for their own learning.

What are the Benefits of an Online Course?

Online courses were originally conceived as a way for people without access to local education to get the certifications and knowledge they needed. These learning opportunities grew in popularity as more people began looking for more flexible ways to learn.

For years, online courses have been extremely useful to people who want to learn in their own time, without having to worry too much about a commute to a school. Online courses make it easier for people to organize their education around their lives. Online courses are:

  • Accessible: You don’t have to be located close to a school offering the education or class you want with an online course. You can connect to teachers and materials from anywhere.
  • Flexible: Many online courses allow you to choose your own hours of study, which is ideal for parents, and professionals who need to study around a job.
  • Affordable: Many online courses can be a lot more affordable than in-person education. You won’t need to pay for travel or accommodation either.
  • Varied: Because online courses are available all over the globe, it’s easy to find the lessons which are ideal for your career plan.

Some online courses can also offer certifications and diplomas recognized around the globe. This makes the classes excellent for people looking to build their resume.

Cite this definition:

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Updated November 26, 2021

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