Monday, October 22, 2012
Although the term Distance Learning may imply an education that may not provide the same benefit as in-class learning, the opposite is true. Distance Learning is offered in two forms — both geared at independent and mature learners. The first is print-based courses, during which students have the program material mailed to their home to be completed in an expected amount of time. The second is online classes, which offers students 24-hour access to a virtual classroom where they can digitally interact with professors and their fellow peers. So while Distance Learning may imply one thing, the truth is the only distance is physical.
In addition to providing mature and independent learners with an outlet through which they can obtain their education, Distance Learning is also a way for those with constraints imposed by personal responsibilities and commitments to attend school. For example, a journalist who works full-time in a newsroom but wishes to switch to the public relations field may do so by attending online classes after she finishes her shift at work.
At Centennial College in Toronto, Ont. Distance Learning is offered through its School of Continuing Education — which educates more than 22,000 learners each year across 140 programs with over 1,300 courses and with discussion-oriented classrooms. Students who enroll in the alternative Distance Learning courses may pursue their credential online or through print-based courses.
The first of these Distance Learning options offers programs such as: Office Bookkeeping, Applied Management Studies, Event Planning/Meeting Management, Automotive Service Advisor, Business Writing, Effective Project Management, Legal Office Assistant, Professional Writing, and more. As previously mentioned, online Distance Learning allows students to learn by communicating with qualified instructors using online communication tools such as discussion boards and forums, and completing digital assignments. There is also a sense of classroom thanks to the exchange of emails with classmates.
Meanwhile, those who choose print-based courses have material mailed to their homes. Examples of Distance Learning print-based correspondence include: Business Management – Entrepreneurial, Business Management – International, Business Management – Marketing, Cosmetics by Correspondence, Ophthalmic Medical Personnel - Phases 1 and 2 and SmartServe. Learning through this option consists of lessons, written assignments, exams and the various tools for success. This print-based distance learning experience allows students the flexibility to communicate with their instructor by email, phone or regular mail. Print based courses are typically completed within a six-month time frame.
Both Distance Learning options require students to complete an in-person physical exam to gain their credentials. Students are responsible for writing their exam on the first Saturday following the course end date. It is their responsibility to book the correct exam date within the time constraints of their course. Students who fail to write their exam by the due date will receive a zero on their exam.