Online or traditional school: which is better?

Lily Deaton

Social Media Editor

Technology is changing so rapidly that it’s now possible to get an education in your pajamas.

Many students consider virtual school an option not just because they can wear comfy clothes while learning, but because of the flexible schedule it can provide.

However, virtual school isn’t for everyone, and students may want to learn about the benefits and disadvantages of both virtual and traditional school.

Parental involvement plays a key role in both traditional and virtual school. In traditional school, a parent may be involved in reviewing homework, parent teacher conferences and volunteering/chaperoning at special events (which decreases in middle and high school). According to Connections Academy, in online school, a parent can structure their child’s daily routine or review lessons and grades, monitor attendance, progress, and comprehension.

As far as personalization, online school is more flexible, while traditional school is more structured, according to prosandcons.com.

Motivation is a big factor in both online and traditional school. Some students may not be as motivated to keep up with online school because they are not as structured.

The biggest difference between online and traditional school is the learning environment. With online school, courses are taken at the student’s pace, while traditional school is taken at the teacher’s pace.

Jamie Stater, a history instructor at Douglas Anderson, teaches a Blended Learning based class, which is mostly online, however she has lessons and assignments of her own.

“I have a few students that have really enjoyed the online portion because they are actually able to get ahead,” said Stater. “Other students do struggle with the online portion and it’s really not well suited to everybody.”

“I like that I can go at my own pace, and I like that there aren’t as many deadlines for [online classes],” said Megan Craver, a vocal junior. “but it’s harder to get teacher help, especially for my H.O.P.E. class, it was harder to communicate with my teacher effectively.”

“It really depends on the student, and learning styles,” said Stater. “But even though there are challenges with it I do think it can be beneficial even to students who don’t love the online style because it teaches them to adapt and to deal with the situation at hand in the best way that they can.”

The students at DA who are considering switching to online school need to be sure to understand what learning environment and style works best for them before making the switch.

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