With the advent of the Internet we have today a classroom right inside our own home. We have the information we want at the exact moment we want and in most part all the information is freely available, that is, we have the opportunity to learn about any subject without having to pay for that end avoiding expenses with specific material that in most cases will be used only once or at most twice to be frank.
Obviously there are prestigious institutions that provide distance education, which confer the most prestigious titles to those that finish a course without at least being present in a classroom. All that with the help of new technological advances that pervade our lives, which in turn make distance education something viable.
Particularly I don’t like the idea of distance education. I prefer to be present at the classroom. It would feel weird taking an educational leadership course in a virtual classroom. I believe that presence education is more enriching. I write this based upon all point of views, being the most important: more active social life interaction.
The virtual classroom world is interesting, yet it’s necessary to heed, for this can bring some undesirable consequences such as the lack of a direct liaison between the teacher/professor and their students and colleagues. Great part of our development is done through social interaction and this is almost foregone when we talk about distance education. There are plenty of other factors that influence my opinion, but for now this demonstrates one of the big bottlenecks that refrains the distance education of evolving in faster paces. There are still conservatives. It can be the case that in a near future such conservatives perish the thought.
The actual distance education environments, such as TelEduc in Brazil enable the distance education practice to reach more and more people. My alma mater UBM constituted a center for distance education called NEAD and uses TelEduc as its environment. I have used it and what I write here has as background my experience as a user of the system.
Tertiary institutions as the case of UBM offer a vast range of improvement courses for their employees and even support courses for students that are undergoing their internship programs and college conclusion projects. The idea appears to be good, but in practice it’s not adopted by everyone, perhaps because of the lack of information regarding the distance education platform’s features and capabilities.
It’s good to highlight that the devices and techniques used to implement distance education are in great part the result of advances pertaining to information and communication technologies. These technologies aggregate people from the more diverse knowledge fields. Information and communication technologies include the set of technological and computational resources set aside to generate and propitiate the use of information. Thus, such technologies are established on the following components: hardware and their peripheral devices, software and their resources, telecommunication systems and data and information management.
The people responsible for the development and management of these components are increasingly requested on the market. Between them are computer engineers, computer scientists, system analysts, business analysts, chief information officers (CIO), chief executive officers (CEO), chief financial officers (CFO) just to name a few.
The instructional level has been growing a lot during the last years, what rises the competitiveness on the job market. A proven fact is that executives have been using distance education to leverage their academic degree, attending courses, such as a Master of Business Administration (MBA) at international universities as MIT, University of Cambridge, University of California, Berkeley, etc. Notwithstanding the executives are on their houses in the comfort of their couches or beds.
I complete this brief analysis of the influence of distance education stating that the use of new technologies like the Internet and well developed distance education environments are making life a lot easier if we take into account the commodity and easy access to information of any given area.
It’s worth to remember about the inherited risks that most of the times pass by unnoticed. The utilization of technology in excess can enslave men, transforming them in slaves of their own inventions. Wherefore we must discuss such subject, aiming at the discovery of a steady point between the virtual and real life, providing a better way for a rich development environment where all people can evolve in a natural manner. I wrote and meant everybody, what presupposes the integration of the underprivileged people into this whole new world of information called Internet. Long live the blogs of life.