All articles in educational games

Pros and Cons of Elearning

As obvious, the term “online education” or “distance learning” simply means what it implies. Through eLearning or distance education programs, students have the capability to enroll in classes that are carried out completely over the internet. Classes are conducted from online colleges and universities across the world, and all that is needed is a bit of motivation from the student’s side to acquire his/her degree online.

In the past couple of years, online education has gained much popularity, as traditional along with online-only colleges began offering distance learning courses after realizing that there are individuals out there who have trouble attending regular classes due to hectic lifestyles. There are numerous reasons why one should opt for eLearning, while on the other hand there are reasons why institutions providing online education are not all that well-reputed.

Pros of Online Education
There are numerous benefits of acquiring online degree, and those already enrolled in distance education programs know the true worth of the education they receive. The most prominent benefit of studying online is that neither the student nor the teacher has to travel long distances to attend classes at a particular location as eLearning can be conducted from just about anywhere in the world. The courses and online degree programs are carried out over the internet, through online learning management systems, internet char, real-time lectures, webinars etc.

The second benefit is that online students have the capability to study at their own pace. In a traditional setting, students need to finish their given assignments within a particular period of time, while through online education they can study whenever they are free. The online faculty assigns projects with a deadline and students can finish their projects at whatever time they find feasible within that particular deadline.

This leads us to the third benefit of online education, which is that those enrolled in an online college or university can easily balance work, family and their studies, thereby fulfilling all commitments. Instead of being away at a traditional college for about 8 hours a day, they can easily spend time with their family or even carry out work-related tasks while studying online.

Cons of eLearning
Just like anything else in life, eLearning has its disadvantages as well. First of all, there is the downside of there being no face-to-face interaction between the student and the professors. Even though they CAN meet outside the World Wide Web once in a blue moon, but it just does substitute for the entire social interaction that takes place in normal settings. Professors and students just do not get to know each other the way they do in a traditional classroom. Another con to the entire eLearning experience is that the college or university individual’s enroll in might not be properly accredited.

There are numerous benefits of proper accreditation, but it is of utmost importance for those who are willing to seek employment upon graduation. Not all online colleges and universities are accredited and you need to make sure …

Advantages of Online Learning

Based on my 20+ years experience in distance education as a student, administrator, recruiter, and faculty member, I know firsthand that there are numerous advantages to online learning.

Listed below are my Top Ten advantages of earning an accredited online degree. Check them out and see if an online education makes sense for you.

1. Accredited Online Schools Are Gaining Popularity and Acceptance.

During the past few years, the availability and variety of online degrees has exploded. The reason for this explosive growth has been the increased acceptance of this type of education and method of delivery. As demand for online education has increased, it has required many major colleges and universities to institute Internet based learning programs. There are even some of the very elite schools that are promoting online learning through YouTube, ITunesU, and Second Life.

2. Online Schools are Convenient.

There is nothing more convenient than attending college classes from the comfort of your own home, while on break at work, or at your local coffee shop. An online school gives more options as far as when you have to complete your course work, and the schedule of when you do this work is strictly in your hands. This convenience factor is motivating many people who never got their college education to finally pursue a degree.

3. Many Online Schools are Affordable.

Saving money is one of the primary advantages of attending an online college. The ever-rising tuition cost in this country has been a problem for many years. Even earning a degree at your hometown school is not the bargain it once was. Consistent and continuous hikes in tuition have caused many local colleges to fall on hard times. Online universities are less expensive and an increasingly good bargain.

Online degrees usually are less expensive per credit hour than traditional degrees. But there are additional savings such as not having to relocate, commuting to classes, room and board, activity fees, parking or numerous other costs associated with attending a traditional brick and mortar university.

4. Flexible Schedule.

Life is busy. This busyness has made it impossible for many people to attend a full time college. This has changed with the option of attending school online and doing it at your own pace. With most online programs you are not required to attend classes on a specific time and day. Online courses are set up in such a way that allows students to work within their own schedule.

Most online programs offer what I call compressed terms. These terms range in length of 5 to 8 weeks. Because of this flexibility a student can complete a degree requirement faster than at a traditional university.

5. Learn While You Earn.

Jim, for example, is a 35 year old. He has graduated from high school, and he always wanted to attend college, but with a family to support he can’t afford to be without his job. Jim has a really good paying full time job at a local printing …

Benefits of Music Education

Three Powerful Reasons why children benefit from music education as part of their Curriculum, especially at a young age. There has been plenty of research done about the benefits of music education for young children.

1. Playing music improves concentration, memory and self-expression

One two-year study in Switzerland run with 1200 children in more than 50 classes scientifically showed how playing music improved children’s reading and verbal skills through improving concentration, memory and self-expression.(1) Younger children who had three more music classes per week and three fewer main curriculums made rapid developments in speech and learned to read with greater ease.

Other effects revealed by the study showed that children learned to like each other more, enjoyed school more (as did their teachers) and were less stressed during the various tests, indicating they were better able to handle performance pressure.

2. Playing music improves the ability to think

Ongoing research at the University of California-Irvine and the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh (2) demonstrate that learning and playing music builds or modifies Neural pathways related to spatial reasoning tasks, which are crucial for higher brain functions like complex maths, chess and science.

The first studies showed that listening to a Mozart sonata temporarily improved a child’s spatial abilities. Further studies compared children who had computer lessons, children who had singing lessons, children who learned music using a Keyboard and children who did nothing additional. The children who had had the Music classes scored significantly higher – up to 35% higher – than the children did Who had computer classes or did nothing additional.(3)

3. Learning music helps under-performing students to improve

Researchers at Brown University in the US (4) discovered that children aged 5-7 years who had been lagging behind in their school performance had caught up with their peers in reading and were ahead of them in math’s after seven months of music lessons. The children’s classroom attitudes and behavior ratings had also Significantly improved, and after a year of music classes were rated as better than the children who had had no additional classes.

1. E W Weber, M Spychiger and J-L Patry, Musik macht Schule. Biografie und Ergebnisse eines Schulversuchs mit erweitertemMusikuntericcht. Padagogik in der Blauen Eule, Bd17. 1993.

2. Various studies by Dr. Gordon Shaw (University of California-Irvine) and Dr. Fran Rauscher (University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh), with others.Including those published in Nature 365:611 and Neuroscience Letters 185:44-47

3. E L Wright, W R Dennis & R L Newcomb. Neurological Res.19:2-8. 1997

4. M F Gardiner, A Fox, F Knowles & D Jeffrey. Learning improved by arts training. Nature 381:284. 1996.…

What is E-learning

E-learning comprises all forms of electronically supported learning and teaching. The information and communication systems , whether networked or not, serve as specific media to implement the learning process. The term will still most likely be utilized to reference out-of-classroom and in-classroom educational experiences via technology, even as advances continue in regard to devices and curriculum.

E-learning is essentially the computer and network-enabled transfer of skills and knowledge. E-learning applications and processes include Web-based learning, computer-based learning, virtual classroom opportunities and digital collaboration. Content is delivered via the Internet, intranet/extranet, audio or video tape, satellite TV, and CD-ROM. It can be self-paced or instructor-led and includes media in the form of text, image, animation, streaming video and audio.

Abbreviations like CBT (Computer-Based Training), IBT (Internet-Based Training) or WBT (Web-Based Training) have been used as synonyms to e-learning. Today one can still find these terms being used, along with variations of e-learning such as e-learning, E-learning, and eLearning. The terms will be utilized throughout this article to indicate their validity under the broader terminology of E-learning.

Market

The worldwide e-learning industry is estimated to be worth over $48 billion according to conservative estimates. Developments in internet and multimedia technologies are the basic enabler of e-learning, with consulting, content, technologies, services and support being identified as the five key sectors of the e-learning industry.

Higher education

By 2006, 3.5 million students were participating in on-line learning at institutions of higher education in the  According to the Sloan Foundation reports, there has been an increase of around 12–14 percent per year on average in enrollments for fully online learning over the five years 2004–2009 in the US post-secondary system, compared with an average of approximately 2 per cent increase per year in enrollments overall. Allen and Seamen (2009) claim that almost a quarter of all students in post-secondary education were taking fully online courses in 2008, and a report by Ambient Insight Research suggests that in 2009, 44 per cent of post-secondary students in the USA were taking some or all of their courses online, and projected that this figure would rise to 81 percent by 2014. Thus it can be seen that e-learning is moving rapidly from the margins to being a predominant form of post-secondary education, at least in the USA.

Many higher educations, for-profit institutions, now offer on-line classes. By contrast, only about half of private, for-profit   schools offer them. The Sloan report, based on a poll of academic leaders, indicated that students generally appear to be at least as satisfied with their on-line classes as they are with traditional ones. Private institutions may become more involved with on-line presentations as the cost of instituting such a system decreases. Properly trained staff must also be hired to work with students on-line. These staff members need to understand the content area, and also be highly trained in the use of the computer and Internet. Online education is rapidly increasing, and online doctoral education have even …

Bias in Times Higher Education Ranking of the World’s Top Universities

The Times Higher Education and Quacquarelli Symonds (THE-QS) have just published the 2009 ranking of the World’s top universities .We compared the ranking of the World’s Top-25 Universities according to THE-QS with the 2008 Academic Ranking of World Universities ARWU.

Overall ranking: THE-QS 2009 versus ARWU 2008
The overall overlap of the two rankings is 72%, with 18 of the World’s Top-25 universities appearing in both the THE-QS and ARWU rankings. This means there are seven universities (more than one in four) that do not appear in each of the other lists.

THE-QS has many more British Universities than ARWU
There are twice as many British universities in the THE-QS ranking of the World’s Top-25 universities than in the ARWU. THE-QS finds that six (24%) of the World’s Top-25 universities are British compared to three (8%) for ARWU.

The difference is particularly striking for the World’s Top-5 universities, where there are four British Universities in the THE-QS (University of Cambridge [2nd], University College London [4th], Imperial College London [5th] and University of Oxford [5th]) compared to only one for the ARWU (University of Cambridge [3rd]).

THE-QS has many fewer public US universities than ARWU
There is only one public US university University of Michigan in the THE-QS ranking compared to six public US universities in the ARWU ranking. The University of California is represented four times in the ARWU ranking (Berkeley, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco) and not once in the THE-QS ranking.

THE-QS is more international than ARWU
The THE-QS ranking of the World’s Top-25 universities includes more non-US universities than the ARWU ranking: 12 (48%) universities are non-US in THE-QS compared to 7 (28%) in the ARWU. In the THE-QS ranking, six countries are represented: US (13), UK (6), Japan (2), Australia (1), Canada (1), Switzerland (1) and Hong Kong (1). In the ARWU five countries are represented: US (18), UK (3), Japan (2), Switzerland (1) and Canada (1).

Stanford University
It is very striking to see that Stanford University is ranked 2nd in the world according to ARWU and only 16th according to THE-QS.

University of California – Berkeley
It is also striking to see that the University of California – Berkeley is ranked 3rd in the world according to ARWU and 36th according to THE-QS.

University College – London
Finally,University College – London is ranked 4th in the world according to THE-QS compared to only 22nd in the world according to ARWU.

Conclusions
The AllAboutUni.com assessment highlights a number of important differences between the two major rankings of the World’s Top-25 universities. THE-QS, which is a British publication, is a more international ranking but it appears to have a bias for British universities and a bias against public US universities. In addition, two highly ranked universities in ARWU – Stanford (ranked 2nd) and Berkeley (ranked 3rd) – are ranked significantly lower by THE-QS.…