Distance Learning - What students like about it:

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Numerous choices

Studying with the best school in the world without any physical limitations – that’s distance learning for me!

Jun-suh
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Easy Access

Starting an online programmes is literally just clicks away; no need to be physically present at all!

Edward
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Raise in status

Suddenly, my boss looks at me in a different way. Even my salary increased!

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

Digital Learning Environment

By DARCO/EADTU

Most higher education institution today have a digital learning environment to support all kind of learning services to students. This holds for both distance teaching universities and more traditional campus-orientated institutions. An institution may use a combination of different technical solutions or integrate many support functions in just one Digital Learning Environment (DLE). Sometimes these environments are called Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), Learning Management Systems (LMS), Learning Content management Systems (LCMS), Virtual Classrooms, etc.

Find and compare 4,248 distance learning programmes

Functions of digital learning environments

For example, the following functions can now be supported digitally:

  • orientation to study (e.g. by free online courses, doing pre-tests)
  • production and delivery course material
  • registration and enrolment
  • providing additional course material and practical video examples
  • calendar, study timetable
  • visualize difficult concepts through modelling and visualization software
  • additional practice training
  • teach concepts by video interaction, simulation and gaming
  • visualize difficult concepts through modelling and visualization software
  • determination of misconception and refine understanding of concepts
  • receive feedback from tutors and students
  • discussion groups, chat
  • work together on assignments in groups, discuss the different problems
  • tracking learning activities, portfolio functions
  • get help and support by students, by institution and sometimes
  • study and work in a (virtual) projects and virtual business environment
  • doing assessment, testing and exams digitally

Examples of such learning systems

Examples of many of these educational functions are BlackBoard, Moodle, Desire2Learn, N@tschool, Teletop, Sharepoint, IT’s Learning, Merlot, etc (there are a few hundred DLE, VLE and L(C)MS availiable). But more and more institutions are using portal software to integrate separate ict-tools that support learning (e.g, skype, email, document sharing, YouTube channels, iTunes, Facebook, etc.).

An effective way to learn

Research shows that students with access to computer assisted instruction, integrated learning systems technology, simulations and software that teach higher order thinking and/or collaborative networked technologies showed positive gains in academic achievement. A recent studied found that students who took either all or part of their instruction online performed better than those taking the same course through traditional face-to-face instruction. Students who took “blended” courses— those that combine elements of online learning and face-to-face instruction—appeared to achieve the highest.

Personalized learning - the trend of the future

However, the success of online and blended learning holds if ICT affords the student an “expansion of learning time” that is difficult or impossible to achieve with face-to-face instruction. In addition the ict-tools and the internet nowadays is making personalized learning environments possible and some make connection to even informal learning. Some institutions even supports social learning in communities and learning networks.

Universities in the spotlight

Ferris State University

Big Rapids, United States

Ferris State University is nationally known for excellence in combining career-oriented and general education in more than 170 degree-programs through nine academic colleges. This mid-sized university offers degrees unique within Michigan in such areas as health-care, business and technology. The University's 16:1 student-to-faculty ratio assures personal attention in the classroom and laboratory. Students have regular contact with faculty members, not teaching assistants, highlights the priority Ferris places on personalized learning. Founded in 1884 by educator and U.S. Senator Woodbridge N. Ferris, the University's mission is to be a national leader in career-oriented technological and professional education.

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University of Newcastle

Newcastle, Australia

Built on the principles of equity, excellence and engagement, the University of Newcastle has a reputation as a world-class institution making an impact within its own region, throughout Australia and across the globe. Our research is world-class and diverse. Our degree programs are internationally recognised and our partnerships and collaborations drive innovation. Our alumni are leaders and our students are preparing to make a difference in the world. We are ranked in the top three per cent of universities world-wide and we have not yet turned 50.

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Kingston University - Distance Learning

Kingston University

London, United Kingdom

The Distance Learning MBA (DLMBA) from Kingston Business School will help you to take ownership of your career. This innovative course is designed to be both academically rigorous as well as immediately applicable to real-life business situations. Accredited by the Association of MBAs (AMBA), this stamp of approval means your MBA is highly valued anywhere in the world. Delivered in a flexible format, the Distance Learning MBA will inspire you to make a difference to your personal and working life.

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Brighton School of Business and Management

Brighton, United Kingdom

We are a self-study online distance learning College specialising in Management and Business qualifications. All courses are completely online and classroom attendance is not required. All our qualifications are UK accredited and are accepted as entry qualifications for higher level courses. All our students are provided with support and contact with a UK tutor. We provide flexible start dates with students starting courses every Monday. Flexible payment plans for fees are also available. Our Management and Business Qualifications have the same status as those studied at University.

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Simon Fraser University

Burnaby, Canada

In the place where innovative education, cutting-edge research and community outreach intersect, you'll find Simon Fraser University. Our vision? To be Canada's leading engaged university. Born in 1965, SFU has become Canada's leading comprehensive university with vibrant campuses in British Columbia's largest municipalities — Vancouver, Burnaby and Surrey — and deep roots in partner communities throughout the province and around the world.

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General

Study orientation

Application and enrolment

Cost and funding

Everyday life as a DL student

Supervision, assessment, exams and grading

After graduation


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