Benefits of Online Learning

As users of the internet, most of us are probably familiar with some of the many benefits of online learning –  lets look at 10 benefits of online university degrees.

You don’t have to qualify for or apply for exemption from Universities South Africa (USAf) if you study at an international online university.


1. Safety

In South Africa today, many students and their parents feel safest at home or in environments of their own choosing. Besides avoiding exposure to the many social vices of the student population on campuses, online students are also safe from the violence on many university campuses, as a result of protests, riots, vandalism and even arson.
Besides that, students are frequently mugged, raped and some have even been murdered on campuses or close by.

Why put yourself in harm’s way, if you can enjoy the benefits of learning online?


2. Affordability

The cost of online university degrees varies from one college or university to the next, but in general, online courses are less expensive than traditional university degrees. Since students do not to to stay in residences on campus or in private accommodation near to the campus, there are no extra costs for rent or accommodation besides those of your current home.

Since online university degree courses are not using classrooms, restrooms and other utilities on campus, the costs of running them are less than traditional degree courses on campus.

Some universities even offer financial aid packages and some employers are given incentives to sponsor their employees to take online university degrees and enjoy the benefits of online learning.


3. Different Admission Requirements

Some online university degrees have different admission requirements from traditional brick-and-mortor universities, which might make it easier for you to be accepted to your choice of degree.
For example, open universities offer online university degrees, both undergraduate and post-graduate degrees, as well as diplomas and short courses  to students without formal academic qualifications. Their goal is to offer everyone equal opportunities to raise their level of education and training.


4. No Transport Costs

benefits of online learning - no transport costsWhether you live in Pofadder, Parys, Perdekop or any other tiny dorp in the world, your online course will be delivered to you wherever you are.  There are no transport costs – no air fares, bus fares, train fares or fuel costs, car maintenance and insurance costs, no speeding fines, no parking costs, no time stuck in traffic. No travelling delays due to strike action, protests, riots, accidents, road works or bad weather!

Since no transport is needed, this also means that an added benefit of online learning is that it is a “green” environment-friendly choice.


5. Accessibility, Convenience and Flexibility

benefits of online learning - convenience and flexibility

Online learning not only gives you the option to choose to study from a remote rural village, your city home, the office, an internet café, a coffee shop, the gym or anywhere you choose, it also means that you don’t have to travel to an institution. No planning your life around your studies, instead you can plan your studies around your life. Your family, hobbies, sport, work and other priorities can come first and then you can fit in your studies.


6.  Commitment and Self-motivation

Achieving an online university degree will be a huge asset to your CV or résumé. Not only the degree, but the fact that you achieved it online. This shows that you have commitment to furthering your education and your skills, that you have organisation and planning skills to accomplish this, that you have self-discipline, commitment, diligence, accountability and perseverance to achieve a goal.  This is one of the less obvious benefits of online learning.


7. Career Advancement and Salary Increases

If you are already employed, you can fit in your studies around your job and family life and once you have achieved your online university degree, you will be able to apply for advancement in your chosen field.
In a study of the benefits of online learning, The Learning House reported that “44% improved their employment standing by obtaining a first job, or a full-time or new job. Salary increases were received by 45% of those surveyed and 36% of respondents obtained promotions.”


8. Improved Technical Skills

Online learning often results in students developing and improving their technical skills, which are also an asset for career purposes. Taking an online university degree may require you to learn to use new software and apps or perform tasks like uploading documents, document sharing, online collaboration with classmates, sharing video or audio files and other such skills which may have professional value in your future career.


9. Global Connections with Fellow Students

Instead of being limited to connecting only with local students in a class at a local university, your online university degree may enable you to connect with fellow-students from around the world. With technology and apps such as FaceTime and Google Docs, students can collaborate and share work from locations around the globe. This unique opportunity allows more diverse groups with a wide variety of ideas and perspectives to create interesting projects.You may be exposed to people from different countries, cultures, communities and background experiences. You may be exposed to their varied points of view and ideas and ultimately you may make valuable professional connections with people from around the world in your field.


10. Wider Choice of University Degree Courses Online

Instead of being limited to choose from the offline degree courses available from your local universities and colleges, online university degrees from around the world are now accessible to you.
Many offline degree courses have quotas as they can only accommodate a limited number of students in those fields each year. Online university degree courses are not usually affected by such offline logistics and you stand a good chance of being accepted if you meet the admission criteria for your degree course of choice.