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Have you investigated methods of learning online?

I am a science major who had trouble immediately understanding concepts in Chemistry and Math. I hated reading the textbook and did not have access to one-on-one tutoring at my university. I wound up going on youtube to watch videos on subjects that I learned about in class, and would soon have a much clearer understanding. I stumbled upon the Khan Academy which I think is amazing because it covers the same subjects that a legit Calc or Chemistry textbook would cover. I have really come to wonder why I even attend class?

I am now a big supporter for free online education, and feel that it is the future for American education. Obviously the main problem is certification, and some classes requiring hands on work, i.e. Chem lab, Geology outings, etc. I read that MIT is planning to offer a free online education program that tracks how much material the student has covered, and will award a basic certificate of completion at the end of the course.
 

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Have you investigated methods of learning online?

I am a science major who had trouble immediately understanding concepts in Chemistry and Math. I hated reading the textbook and did not have access to one-on-one tutoring at my university. I wound up going on youtube to watch videos on subjects that I learned about in class, and would soon have a much clearer understanding. I stumbled upon the Khan Academy which I think is amazing because it covers the same subjects that a legit Calc or Chemistry textbook would cover. I have really come to wonder why I even attend class?

I am now a big supporter for free online education, and feel that it is the future for American education. Obviously the main problem is certification, and some classes requiring hands on work, i.e. Chem lab, Geology outings, etc. I read that MIT is planning to offer a free online education program that tracks how much material the student has covered, and will award a basic certificate of completion at the end of the course.

This is the important part. If people want online classes, I think that's fine. However, despite what the moneyed interests propagate there is ZERO societal merit for any government (or really individual) financing of for-profit education, either online or through traditional brick and mortar facilities.

You might also want to check out AcademicEarth.org Free Online Classes | Online Learning | Academic Earth
 

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I am now a big supporter for free online education, and feel that it is the future for American education.
It has an even bigger impact overseas.

The main limitations of online education are:
Lack of motivation. With formal classes, sometimes you may lack motivation at the start, but get into it after a while. The structure of the course (with homework etc), can provide some momentum.

Lack of feedback (is your work any good?), and lack of help when stuck.

But the above points will be improved over time as the online education community increases in size. Right now you can sometimes get excellent help on many areas by going to dedicated forums for example, (but usually you have to demonstrate your commitment to learning in some way, that you aren't just trying to be lazy by asking others).
 

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Awesome site I've found recently: Khan Academy -- I'm going from the basics in math and up. It's got pretty much everything, and it's very concise.

I found it when I was asking for advice on a math forum. And this site doesn't just have math. It's awesome the resources you can find if you know where to look. Go to a specific area, and you end up with so much more.

Pretty much the keywords: ''open courseware'' in google will take you to similar sites such as MIT. The problem I found with MIT and similar affiliates is that I wasn't at the same level of understanding with math yet. So khanacademy.com gets me there.
 

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If you're fresh out of high school you should never opt out of brick and mortar college for an online degree. Horrible mistake. If it's to supplement your current college education then that is fine.
 

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Lack of feedback (is your work any good?), and lack of help when stuck.

But the above points will be improved over time as the online education community increases in size. Right now you can sometimes get excellent help on many areas by going to dedicated forums for example, (but usually you have to demonstrate your commitment to learning in some way, that you aren't just trying to be lazy by asking others).
Unfortunately this can be the problem with high achieving students, where I once heard a true story about a lady's husband who decided to do a UK based Open University course in their 40+ years and ended up getting their final grades reduced by 30-50% simply because the Online lecturer had no way of proving or disproving that the student was achieving 80-100%'s on their own merit.
 

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I just download courses\books\notes from torrent sites and learn from them, I don't care about certification, because most of the subjects that I'm interested in are not related to my field.
 

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The problem is that the MIT certification will pale in comparison to the real MIT degree. When it comes time to graduate and get a job, companies will go after the more prestigious degree. The quality of employee is much less riskier because its consistent and standardized. Its a huge obstacle for free online education to overcome in order to be of actual use for the average student.
 

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I'm learning stuff online too. It does helps a lot, especially if your teachers are bored and don't care much. If u really have passion for something, u should try to get as much info u can .
 
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