Online learning combines information technology and multimedia to provide learning programs for students through the World Wide Web or through a combination of media. Online and traditional universities offer students an education and a degree, but the difference is that online universities do not require the physical presence of an instructor. Online learning programs are available as independent courses, Associates, Degrees, Masters and PhDs, completion programs, continuing education courses and professional certification. Students who want to earn an online degree can study at a traditional university or an online university that offers distance education programs.

More and more professionals are opting for online courses as this type of learning enables them to earn additional qualifications without giving up their jobs. Distance learning is particularly suitable for adult learners due to convenience, 24/7 access, interactive technology, and ease of communication. Educational institutes around the world now offer a wide variety of online degrees or diplomas for careers in health, business, management, technology and education. An estimated 97 percent of public universities now offer online courses and approximately 3.5 million students take at least one class online.

To help the learning process through the Internet, the student has online study material, tutors, virtual classrooms and other web resources. In addition, classroom training is also available in convenient locations for most online courses. Furthermore, the rhythm, sequence and learning style can be adjusted according to individual needs. In an online environment, a student can chat with the instructor and other students at a certain time each week or be part of a virtual classroom at a fixed time. It is also possible to get help by email or other web resources created for students who are enrolled in online programs.

Online learning has proven to be beneficial for people who are good communicators, computer experts and proactive. Statistics show that people seeking an online degree are generally over 25 years old, employed, and have previous college experience. Such online students are often motivated and their course completion rate exceeds that of students enrolled in classroom training programs. Modern online learning methods allow a student to have access to a rich interactive experience and endless learning opportunities.

Author's Bio: 

As the demand and supply of online and distance learning of all kinds increases, it is fascinating to see what a fully developed and highly acclaimed online university is like.