The advent of technology and the Internet has impacted multiple facets of our lives, including our mode of getting educated. This is particularly true in the field of distance education programs in India, which are now attracting more students from different parts of the country. With the forming of the government-approved University Grants Commission (UCG), the Indian government has also formally recognized distance education as a viable form of imparting education.
Through this article, we shall discuss the major factors that have contributed to the rapid growth of distance education among Indian students.
Most of the distance education programs offer a high level of flexibility to the students. They can now study at their own pace and according to their own convenience. No matter where the student is located in India, they can enroll for the distance learning course and be assured of quality education.
Students save a lot of time when pursuing a distance education program. They also have the flexibility of studying at their own convenient time (for example, working students studying during the weekend or each night). Additionally, distance education students can save time commuting to their college or universities, which is an unavoidable hazard for most campus students. This is particularly true for students living in major Indian cities, thanks to the daily traffic hassles, and those living in remote villages, who need to travel a long distance to their nearest college.
Distance education programs in any subject are generally cheaper, as compared to the corresponding on-campus programs. By working from their homes, students can also save on other associated costs such as hostel charges and commuting expenses.
Popular among working professionals
Most of the distance learning programs are for a chance to gain a higher education whilst working and are more popular amongst them. Distance education is a form of blessing for working professionals, who do not want to leave their jobs but still want to complete their higher education courses at the same time.
Additionally, the flexibility aspect associated with distance education allows working professionals to plan their study time after completing their work assignments.
Recognition among Indian employers
Thanks to the accreditation and industry recognition provided by UGC and professionals who have completed distance education programs from reputed universities like Sikkim Manipal enjoy better acceptance among Indian employers. Not only does the industry employ these students, they are also encouraging their employees to pursue these distance education programs while being employed with them.
Despite the factors that favour distance education, this mode of learning is not suitable for all students. Negative factors such as lack of self-discipline and motivation, can be major drawbacks for students pursuing distance education. Students, opting to enrol for a distance education program, must evaluate the quality of the program and the reputation of the college or university, which is offering the program.