Feb 06, 2017 10:09 AM EST
Distance learning is one way of achieving digital equity among colleges and universities in urban and rural areas. Internet connections are available both in urban and rural areas. However, rural colleges and universities lack laboratory facilities and qualified teachers to help them benefit from digital education.
Forrest College in South Carolina is one of the rural colleges in the US. However, its students enjoy digital learning tools that urban students get from their schools. The school did this through Distance Learning, according to EdTech.
Many rural colleges and universities do not have enough qualified teachers to handle special courses. One solution is to hire qualified teachers from other places and let them teach these courses online. Aside from meeting the need for a special instructor, students can take the course at home through distance learning.
Transportation issues in rural areas result to high rate of absenteeism and dropping out. One solution is to allow students to learn in their homes via the internet. They can attend classes by going online and joining their classmates and teachers. This way, they will enjoy the benefits that the digital age has made possible.
However, some teachers find distance learning a source of anxiety. They are used to teaching using textbooks to students in a classroom. Teaching students in a remote area using online materials causes this. They fear that the materials they choose are not suitable for students' level. Others are bothered about reliability of the sources, according to CampusTechnology.
Some teachers find it better to use lectures by professors. This way, students learn from the people who wrote the materials. Students can do this without leaving their school campuses. The school can arrange to connect to a live lecture for students to attend. For better learning experience, interactive online lectures are the best choice. Students can interact with other students watching the lecture and ask the lecturer questions.