Are You Ready for Distance Learning?

There are many advantages and disadvantages which students should be aware of before selecting a distance course.


  • Distance learning courses allow students to work on their own time rather than report to class at a particular time.

  • Travel time and expense is greatly reduced.

  • Distance learning courses allow students to work from home or office.

  • Students who prefer written communication may do well in distance learning courses.

  • Students may get to know faculty and other students on a deeper level in an online course since many are more inhibited in a classroom setting.


  • Distance learning students may miss the face-to-face interaction with students and instructor.

  • Students who are not disciplined and self-motivated may find it a challenge to keep up in a distance course.

  • Students who are poor typists or who are lacking in technical skills may be at a disadvantage in a distance course.

  • Distance learning courses may actually take more time than a traditional course.

  • Students may experience occasional difficulty to immediately reach other classmates and/or the instructor through technology.

What skills do I need to succeed in a distance learning course?

There are two categories of skills that you should possess: technical and study skills. As for technical skills, you should know basic word processing, how to send and receive emails, how to send and receive attachments, navigate the Web, and basic knowledge of Windows or Macintosh operating systems. As for study skills, you should be self-motivated, manage your time well, have good communication skills and be diligent. Patience and a sense of humor are also helpful!