Online learning has become beneficial to many individuals because of the following reasons; one benefit is that students have a variety of programs and courses to enroll. Unlike the traditional universities where one had to undertake a course that one did not wish to do, online learning can allow one to do a course she or he wishes. Also, the online programs are affordable as compared to traditional universities. Most online degrees have cheap tuition, The cost of commuting and also buying textbooks are cut off. Online education allows students to organize their study programs giving them an opportunity of convenience and flexibility, as students can study and work at the same time (Brosche & Feavel, 2011). Study materials are also available online. Hence, the student does not have the need to arrange library trips. It is important to note that online learning gives an opportunity for the shy student to interact with other students .this is not possible in the traditional universities. Students can communicate through chats as well as class education with more ease. To some learners, online studies are easier to concentrate, as one is not interrupted by class activities. Those taking online education have an advantage of advancing their careers. They can complete their degrees while raising their families while working or in between jobs. Through the online education, one can further new computer skills. As the student is in the process of navigating new programs and learning management systems. One can learn how to share and create new documents as well as incorporating video materials into assignments.
Benefits of Instructional Design
There are various advantages of using instructional models. One of the benefits is that the instructional design uses interaction strategies that promote participation of students. Instructional design involves different stakeholders that are trainers and experts who help in learning, unlike the other training programs that only have got instructors. More so another benefit is that instructional design establishes clear accountabilities and deliverables by pointing out concrete and measurable goals (Collison, 2000). The whole design of a program and its components are based on goals .Instructional design allows consistency whereby consistency means that instructional design can replicate a process, and ensure integrity .Instructional design is cost effective it allows learners to plan and identify easy and efficient methods which learners can get information. Hence, the learning process is shortened, goals met and resources maximized.
The Use of Discussion Board
Discussion board refers to an online tool that enables groups of people to communicate asynchronously. It is composed of forums which are folders having messages on particular subjects. The forums have threads that are series of texts relating to specific topic or questions and every person contribution to a particular conversation is known as a message (Hartshorne et al., 2013). A discussion board can be used illustrate the application or understanding of course material. It can be used to pose or ask questions about readings assignments or course content, in addition to this it can be used to raise a motion among learners. More so in can be used to interact with peer friends, share valuable links and resources for students .it can also be used to extend time on various issues beyond the actual classes. It allows time to gauge oneself as to whether what was taught in class has been understood.
Brosche, T. A. M., & Feavel, M. (2011). Successful online learning: Managing the online learning environment efficiently and effectively. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett
Collison, G. (2000). Facilitating online learning: Effective strategies for moderators. Madison, WI: Atwood Publishing
Hartshorne, R., Heafner, T. L., & Petty, T. M. (2013). Teacher education programs and online learning tools: Innovations in teacher preparation. Hershey PA: Information Science Reference
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