In this era of globalization, technological innovations have augmented vividly in every sphere including the mainstream education and training. The once traditional classes are now shaping into modern virtual classrooms, virtual universities, online courses and cyberspace institution. Virtual classroom specifically is one of the supreme tools in modern day academic world.
Benefits of Virtual Classroom is that they provide an opportunity to connect and learn in “real time” from the world’s best – be it teachers or study buddies.
Moreover, it can cater to the learning requirements of all individuals irrespective of age, gender, location, purchasing power, special requirements etc. Though, e-learning is quickly becoming an imperative part of our life, developing countries like India, Brazil, Russia still require intense marketing to promote this tool, especially in the semi-urban and rural areas where masses reside.
What is a virtual classroom?
A virtual classroom or VC is an online learning environment, with unique features, which is web-based and can be accessed through a portal. If you are wondering how it works, here’s the answer…It’s just like any traditional classroom with loads of additional knowledge enhancing features! A student in a virtual classroom participates in synchronous instruction, which means that the teacher (s) and student (s) are logged into the virtual learning environment at the same time. Please note a teacher can also be a peer who has better knowledge of the subject as compared to the rest of his study mates, also referred to as “Group Study”. Earlier, it was often argued that conventional learning centers are the best medium of education as teachers can give their attention to the students personally. Fortunately, with the advancements in technology, online education can now offer similar benefits to the students with the aid of message boards, video/audio conferencing, teleconferencing, Wikis, discussion boards, chat capabilities and much more
In fact, it is a place where one can enhance his/her knowledge extensively using the latest features and education tools such as online flashcards and quiz generators. Not to mention, such effective tools can only make the learning far more fun and engaging, keeping the learner alert all throughout the session.
The Significance of Virtual Classrooms –
- No real fixed time – When it comes to traditional schools, you are required to visit a physical location and at a fixed time, whereas there is no such requirement in virtual classrooms. Moreover, you can comfortably sit in your home and fulfil your learning and academic needs.
- Increase in interaction – When a teacher is accessible to a variety of students at any time during the day, the increase in learning of students has been much higher as compared to traditional classrooms. This provides real time interaction and encourages group discussions.
- Learning becomes fun and simple – In traditional and conventional education systems, teachers usually have to put in a lot of effort to give his personal attention to every student. Yet, the results often seem to be negative. But with the aid of new technologies in e-learning, instructors can present any given chapter via multimedia with text, pictures, video, sound and animation. Undoubtedly, this can make toughest of theories simple, effective, fun and easy.
- Increase in literacy – The best thing about the virtual classrooms is that it can benefit large number of students thus increasing the literacy rate of any country.
- Saves time and money – These learning sources are usually available 24/7. Thus, one can benefit with it and save their plethora of time and money. In short, online learning makes for an inexpensive source for our education system.
- Students from any part of the world can attend the Virtual Class – It doesn’t matters which part of the world you are in. If you have Internet connection and computer with decent specifications, you can attend the virtual class and learn from some of the best faculties.
- The session can be recorded – When we come out of a conventional class, we have to mentally recollect the points that are discussed and students often forget some important things. In a Virtual Class, you have a facility to record the entire session. This way, students won’t have to take any notes as they can watch the session anytime they feel!
Ironical part is that, though the popularity of virtual classrooms is increasing with each passing day, but still, they are considered as only supplemental learning solutions. One has to understand that whether it is a traditional classroom or an online one, the content needs to be appropriate and the level of teaching has to be up-to-date in order to make learning effective for all the students.