Distance Learning - What students like about it:

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Flexibility

I don’t depend on the visiting hours of my tutors any longer. Convenient online tools provide direct feedback on my progress

Joanna
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Save Money

What strikes me the most: Distance education programmes are often cheaper than their traditional counter parts

Sabine
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Individual support

For me studying online is perfect: No overcrowded lecture halls but individual feedback to keep me focused in my studies

Jake
Interested? Find your Distance Learning Programmes: Start your search

Why choose distance or online study?

By EADTU

Currently, some three million students are studying at a distance or online, half of them in specialized open and distance teaching universities organized in nine European countries (United Kingdom, Spain (2), Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal, Italy, Greece and Cyprus), and the other half in conventional universities all over Europe. The number of distance and online students is increasing every year as there is a growing need for it, especially for mature students, at the undergraduate and the postgraduate level and in continuing education or professional development.

Variety of offers

Courses vary from formal degree courses to non-formal short courses for professional training and updating. A growing number of universities is also publishing open educational resources, which are open to everybody for free use and informal learning.

Find and compare 4,257 distance learning programmes

Advantages of distance study

Most students are studying at a distance or online, because of the flexibility of the system. There is no better way to combine studies and work or family than by independent learning, at any time and any place and following a personal pace, supported by teaching staff or co-studying with peer learners in learning communities. The courses are specially designed for self-study and adapted to the needs of mature students and of the actual knowledge society. They are student-centered, while learning programs are often personalized to fit the needs of the individual student.

Of course, the flexibility is specifically important to students with special needs or who for other reasons are not able to follow courses on campus.

Easy of access

Many students also follow this system because it is open, which means that especially in open universities no formal requirements have to be fulfilled to access the courses. However, students should have the necessary prior knowledge and skills to be successful. In some European countries, open universities were established with the primary mission to offer students without formal entry qualifications a second chance to follow higher education.

Because they are combining study and work, many students will study at a part-time basis, which still requires a strong time management from the student.

Universities in the spotlight

South African Theological Seminary

Johannesburg, South Africa

The South African Theological Seminary (SATS) is a fully online, evangelical, distance education institution, based on 3 foundational principles, namely, Bible-based, Christ-centred and Spirit-led. It is fully accredited in English and French by the Council on Higher Education, all the way to the PhD level.

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Wageningen University

Wageningen, Netherlands

Wageningen University is one of the leading international universities in the field of healthy food and living environment. Studying at Wageningen University guarantees you premium quality education and an international quality benchmark on your curriculum vitae. Here, you will focus on current and future global issues that are of increasing importance to both industry and government.

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Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Groningen

Groningen, Netherlands

Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Groningen (Hanze UAS) is the largest University of Applied Sciences in the northern part of the Netherlands and is located in the vibrant student city Groningen.

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Swansea University

Swansea, United Kingdom

Swansea University is a research-led university that has been making a difference since 1920. The University community thrives on exploration and discovery, and offers the right balance of excellent teaching and research, matched by an enviable quality of life.

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anywhere