A majority of students these days are learning in public schools in their cities. These public schools are a great alternative to private education due to how the education is open to all and allows students to interact with students from various societal backgrounds. However, two major issues that public schools are attempting to confront is first, finding a way to provide engaging content in their lessons, and for two, to still provide personal attention to students who need it. What is the likely solution? Making more use of technology. One way this has occurred is through online video websites like YouTube and Khan Academy. Today, we will take a look at how these venues of further help can provide the assistance students are craving.
The Options Available
One the web today, two options that has led to online education revolution are YouTube and Khan Academy. The latter was developed by educator Salman Khan. Khan, who stars in every video on his website, has provided hundreds of instructional videos on everything from basic arithmetic to the depths of Physics and even the current economic situation for good measure. Points are awarded for added motivation to visit the site more and more.
The second option is through YouTube. The same website that we have found cat videos and people making a fool of themselves is also a great place where people have been able to learn the basics of computer science and quantum Physics.
A third option that individuals have made use of is iTunes U. iTunes U is more than just a podcast service as apart of iTunes, the service also allows you to watch videos from some providers and even download the same syllabus, assignments, and reading list that the college students are making use of. This is the closest to a college class that any of the other two options have provided. The pickings aren’t focused on quantity by any measure, but with options like Stanford and Harvard, the quality is omnipresent.
As mentioned before, one issue that public schools are trying to tackle is the issue of a lack of personal attention. With many classes having upwards of 20 kids in a room, it is quite difficult to help out the student not at reading level while the student with possible a attention deficit disorder is finding themselves easily distracted. All in all, showing that no two classrooms are alike and teachers are stretched thin to try and provide for all individuals.
Online learning options provide the attention that a classroom may not always provide. Khan Academy and YouTube, for example, provide comment sections, allowing you to discuss the topic with fellow watchers and have questions ironed out in a timely manner. However, in favor of a classroom setting, it’s important to reiterate that there’s nothing like the classroom attention, when present, that a teacher can provide when they know the student on a more personal level that through a video comment.
Meeting and Exceeding
One thing we all know about online video is that the topics covered are done so in depth and usually with a real life application. This allows many individuals to find the lessons clicking with them a bit more. Due to the personal attention provided and the practice, for example, that Khan Academy allows individuals to make use of, students are more likely to meet classroom expectations, sometimes even exceeding them, making them better prepared for topics covered later in the school year.
A Couple of Drawbacks
As with anything, there are both benefits and drawbacks that should be considered. For one, as mentioned before, you aren’t getting the same type of attention that we know from a brick-and-mortar classroom. You are behind a computer and the person on the other end may not always notice when a certain point isn’t clicking well with the student.
Secondly, different schools have different standards and curriculum, something online study may confuse or complicate. Due to these two drawbacks, online video help should be used as a supplement instead of a set in stone guideline to what is taught. That can be done by making use of it when a subject isn’t being well explained in class, and should be followed with a conversation with the instructor to reiterate what you reviewed online. When done correctly, online video can be the perfect way to bring students on their right path and level.