Online Training vs. Online Education

 

If you are a fan of what is called “online education,” you might want to read the piece my friend Cliff Orwin published today in Toronto’s Globe and Mail. The key to understanding his contention that online and education are terms that do not belong together is the fact that he distinguishes education from training: “By ‘education,'” he writes,

I don’t mean training or even mere instruction. Widget-making (however complex the widget) may well be teachable online. By education I mean formation of the whole person, to which the humanities have traditionally aspired – as have the natural and social sciences in their noblest conceptions of themselves.

Orwin does not deny that an electronic component can be useful. He recognizes that viewing a lecture on a screen from afar at one’s leisure can be an advantage. But he insists that something of great importance will always be missing.

The New York Times of July 19 contained an excellent column by the University of Virginia’s Mark Edmundson. He explained why teaching requires the physical presence of the students. Prof. Edmundson likens good teaching to jazz. It is inherently responsive and improvisational. You revise your presentation as it goes, incorporating the students’ evolving reception of it. In response to their response, as individuals and as a group, you devise new variations on your theme. You don’t address students in the abstract or as some anonymous throng scattered throughout cyberspace. You always teach these students, in this room, at this time.

So it matters to me to know who my students are, to know their faces and names, to see how they dress and what they’re reading. I need to talk to them before and after class and listen to what they’re saying among themselves. Above all, it’s crucial for me to hear their voices as they answer my questions and ask their own, to heed their inflections and mark the expressions on their faces. In my large introductory course, I devote a third of the time to discussion. That’s not just so the students can probe me, but so I can probe them.

It’s equally important to the students that I’m there. They need a real person with whom to engage. Someone to interrogate. Someone to persuade them. Someone to resist. Someone with whom they can identify or refuse to identify. Because education addresses the whole person, it requires a real person to model it. It matters to the students not just to hear what I say but to hear the voice in which I say it – the hesitations as well as the certainties. They need an example of someone who, like them, is learning as he goes along – but just happens to be further along than they are.

Live education is expensive, you say? The best things in life tend to be.

What Orwin is arguing for here is, of course, a liberal education, and he knows perfectly well that such an education is not suitable for everyone. But I think that, within the limits he sets, his argument is sound.

The most important course I ever took was a seminar taught on Plato’s Republic at Cornell in 1968/69 by Allan Bloom. I vigorously resisted his argument; I fought against him both terms; and, in part for that reason, he was never especially fond of me. But the exchanges we had nonetheless changed my life. I fought him until he persuaded me, and those exchanges inspired me to do a great deal of reading in subsequent years as I struggled to understand through the lens of certain great books what was going on all around me.

There was an electricity in that seminar that I have always tried to replicate in my classes. My aim is to provoke and to inspire — to get the students to interrogate the texts that they are reading and to think. And when I succeed, as I sometimes do, they force me to rethink — for, if they get drawn in, they either resist my interpretation or press it further than I have.

The same thing can happen as a consequence of a lecture. Most often, things come alive when I open things up for questions. Sometimes I learn things I did not know. At other times I have to think on my feet — and when I do I learn things that I would not otherwise learn. Online education cannot be much more than a pale shadow of the education that takes place in a seminar or when questions are posed.

Training may well be another matter. A video can help me see how to put a bike together. A video can teach me the rules of poker (especially if I can watch it twice). An online lecture can help me understand Hamlet. But it is not a substitute for what goes on in a seminar on Hamlet. Some things cannot be done on the cheap, alas.

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Members have made 133 comments.

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  1. Profile photo of Reckless Endangerment Member

    Tyler Cowen highlighted a form of this phenomenon a few months ago at Virginia Tech as it applies in introductory courses in a few subject areas.

    As a former high school teacher of civics and economics, I do think my students would have benefited from some of the more procedural aspects of what I was trying to teach them. For example, why is a demand curve downward sloping? How does the law of diminishing returns apply to the marginal cost curve? There are fantastic videos online explaining these topics which students can watch and then if they do not understand the concept upon the first listening, can go back and re-listen. However, a good teacher will always be necessary to draw out of his or her students the implications of these realities and to apply them to current events so students know that these are not arcane topics relegated to the classroom forever.

    Dr. Rahe’s experience in a lively seminar demonstrates how crucial the lecture/discussion method is when you advance into higher education. The most active students are a check against the biases of opinionated professors and foster a collective pursuit of what Plato called “Truth”

    • #1
    • August 18, 2012 at 8:05 am
  2. Profile photo of Dr. Curmudgeon Inactive

    Dr. Rahe, I both hope and fear that you are correct in the “education” versus “training” distinction. On the one hand, it promises the retention of a humanities curriculum and preserves the (broadly understood) civilizing function colleges and universities have had for centuries.

    On the other hand, what worries me is that the “education” and “training” distinction will lead to a segregation of American higher education. Pricey private liberal arts colleges and Ivies will keep the humanities, while more affordable state universities (answerable to taxpayers, state boards of eduction, and budget watching pols) will devolve into purely vocational institutions offering degrees in the hard sciences and business only.

    • #2
    • August 18, 2012 at 8:14 am
  3. Profile photo of The King Prawn Member

    Yes, but how much individual interaction do most students get with their educators in the modern higher education lecture auditorium filled with 500+ students and a grad student delivering the lecture?

    My experience with online education involved virtually no lectures. The source material reading was the lecture. Discussions almost exactly like we have here at Ricochet were the interaction. I probably received more from the experience than the average student, but I actually did the reading and engaged the instructors and other students in the online discussions. Though I never saw their faces, I received more individual attention and instruction from the teachers in those courses than I did from traditional instruction because there were fewer limitations on the time of engagement and less competing voices within that time. I realize that such is not the case for everyone. Online education puts the onus on the student to receive more than on the educator to give.

    • #3
    • August 18, 2012 at 8:37 am
  4. Profile photo of Crow's Nest Member

    I completely agree with what you’ve said above, Prof. Rahe, and had a very similar experience as an undergraduate, first with Aristotle’s Politics in a seminar (20 students). Discussion, debate, and proceeding by questioning simply cannot be replaced by a powerpoint or instructional video. To sum up my experience in shorthand: there are to this day a number of books that are never far from my mind. 

    The distinction you’ve illustrated is one that American “higher education” is losing sight of–in part due to the maniacal pursuit of specialization, but also in the way that students who were not necessarily best off in a liberal arts curriculum are being herded into university classrooms that resemble nothing so much as factories, and which only serve to impoverish the genuine experience (which can be life-changing) with liberal education.

    • #4
    • August 18, 2012 at 8:53 am
  5. Profile photo of Skyler Member

    I’m sorry, but that’s pure snobbery.

    I have found that the university professors I’ve had have at times been good, more often competent, but often they have been dreadful. I need a credit in a subject for a degree, but I have to sit through Prof. Boring’s class to get it. If I have to go to an online source to learn the material after sitting through boring lectures, then why should I pay for the boring lecture?

    Really, the only reason to prefer a brick house university over an online one is because of the entrenched interest of the university. There really is no benefit, unless you think fraternities and dorms are the most mature environment to send your kids to.

    • #5
    • August 18, 2012 at 8:57 am
  6. Profile photo of Paul A. Rahe Contributor
    Paul A. Rahe Post author
    Dr. Curmudgeon: Dr. Rahe, I both hope and fear that you are correct in the “education” versus “training” distinction. On the one hand, it promises the retention of a humanities curriculum and preserves the (broadly understood) civilizing function colleges and universities have had for centuries.

    On the other hand, what worries me is that the “education” and “training” distinction will lead to a segregation of American higher education. Pricey private liberal arts colleges and Ivies will keep the humanities, while more affordable state universities (answerable to taxpayers, state boards of eduction, and budget watching pols) will devolve into purely vocational institutions offering degrees in the hard sciences and business only. · 42 minutes ago

    I share your fears.

    • #6
    • August 18, 2012 at 8:58 am
  7. Profile photo of Paul A. Rahe Contributor
    Paul A. Rahe Post author
    Skyler: I’m sorry, but that’s pure snobbery.

    I have found that the university professors I’ve had have at times been good, more often competent, but often they have been dreadful. I need a credit in a subject for a degree, but I have to sit through Prof. Boring’s class to get it. If I have to go to an online source to learn the material after sitting through boring lectures, then why should I pay for the boring lecture?

    Really, the only reason to prefer a brick house university over an online one is because of the entrenched interest of the university. There really is no benefit, unless you think fraternities and dorms are the most mature environment to send your kids to. · 0 minutes ago

    As I said, liberal education is not suitable for everyone.

    • #7
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:00 am
  8. Profile photo of Doug Kimball Member

    Small classroom seminars are a rarity in our public universities. Students can graduate having never had that experience. It’s interesting to watch this debate. 

    Why has no one pointed out that the the government’s financial aid policy is “from each according to his parent’s means, to each according to his necessity”? Funny, it follows the Ivy League’s financial aid policy! Marx and Engel would be so proud.

    • #8
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:07 am
  9. Profile photo of Paladin Inactive

    Eight high quality posts in the last five days? Dr. Rahe, you are incredible and you spoil us here at Ricochet! I hope your students realize how very fortunate they are.

    • #9
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:09 am
  10. Profile photo of donald todd Member

    Paul, there was the year I worked for a Catholic parish and spent a large portion of that reading the Russian authors such as Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy and Solzhenitsyn. I wanted to know what they were saying. I remember enjoying them all but Tolstoy.

    Tolstoy was problematic for me. He could make wallpaper sound interesting, but he did not like people. Whenever I finished one of his books, I stopped reading for at least a few days until the vituperation went away. Yet I was assured of his genius. I could read it and understand it.

    To be sure, I read each book, including the two books of the Gulag Archipelago, straight through, as time permitted.

    I may have benefited from a teacher of Russian literature, but then I may have gotten some deconstructionist, or worse, some idiot savant of the Soviet ethic who hated Solzhenitsyn and had been awarded a PhD in Russian literature.

    So I am caught. Did I miss something. Perhaps, but perhaps not, and now I will never know.

    • #10
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:10 am
  11. Profile photo of Eric Voegelin Inactive

    I agree. I graduated from a good, midwestern, four-year liberal arts college in ’68. As a freshman, I received a John Houseman-style dressing down from my history professor over my choice of subject for a proposed paper. There were maybe half a dozen other students in the room and I’m sure they were all somewhat shocked as I know I was. But it was an essential part of my education — a brutal notice that he expected nothing less than excellence — and it could not have happened online. And there were other fine professors too.

    But there aren’t enough good schools and good professors to go around these days. I’m afraid that we’ve seen a golden age come and go.

    UPDATE: Today, I condemn what my school has become and I do so on the basis of what the professors there taught me. There’s an irony for you.

    • #11
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:19 am
  12. Profile photo of genferei Member

    There are how many millions of ‘university’ students in physical universities? How many dozen have a Bloomlike whole person shaping experience? I’ll give you that such an experience is valuable, but what a staggeringly inefficient way to deliver it.

    • #12
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:25 am
  13. Profile photo of Crow's Nest Member

    It’s important to emphasize, as Prof. Rahe suggests and as Prof. Orwin makes a bit more explicit, that education proper includes a kind of character training (some studies even presuppose it) and example setting which is exceeding difficult to replicate at a distance. 

    It’s one of the reasons to prefer private education to public education in our time–our public schools are either no longer willing or no longer able to help in character formation.

    • #13
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:28 am
  14. Profile photo of Trace Inactive

    Nonsense. Sloan Consortium has been studying this for 15 years. Many people respond far more effectively in a less public environment in which they feel less vulnerable participating in class discussion. And many instructors respond more readily and effectively to students in an online setting.

    Not everyone can be an effective instructor or learner online but this essay and frankly your endorsementof it Dr. Rahe reflects an uninformed attitude common to traditional academics not borne out by research or even simple first-hand observation but from a legitimate sense of threat.

    Would you not acknowledge the quality of discussion and interaction that takes place in this forum? Would you not acknowledge that it meets or exceeds that of at least some of your own classroom experiences? I know it parallels or exceeds many or mine and I attended excellent, traditional schools. 

    No, not everyone is suited to a liberal education but that has nothing to do with the efficacy of the instructional format. There are plenty of students in large state universities and small private colleges that would be better off receiving skills-based training.

    • #14
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:30 am
  15. Profile photo of Chris Campion Thatcher

    A “liberal” education, meaning someone studying classics, languages, political science, etc, does benefit from that back and forth dialogue that is more immediate and present.

    But frankly, that model does not and cannot apply to all disciplines, and I do not need a philosophical discussion on the merits of capitalism while I’m working up an Excel model on projected cash flows based on historical and predictive factors. What I need is time and a resource to hit up when I get stuck – if I get stuck, badly.

    This is the difference between direct, hands-on learning, learning that applies to the real world where projects are assigned and you’re expected to complete them – meaning you do it yourself. Like many students, I need to *do* in order to learn, not to be lectured to, and to then denigrate the online education as a whole because of only one or two areas of study (and I agree that not all studies fit well into the digital model) seems at least disingenuous.

    • #15
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:40 am
  16. Profile photo of skoook Inactive

    This should be the first chapter in the Richochet greatest hits collection.It show cases the Ricochet promise that Rob,Peter and James wax poetic about.

    Ever since Instapundit steered me to the Khan Academy http://www.khanacademy.org/ ,I haven been observing the education of 6 grandchildren 6-16. Our public schools are delivering poor training at great expense. Education is very scarce, I cant imagine even 10% of public school teachers through high school meeting Dr. Rahe’s definition of education.

    The comments to date showcase the excellence of Comments on Ricochet compared to other sites. Thanks Professor Rahe

    • #16
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:45 am
  17. Profile photo of Chris Campion Thatcher

    (continued): But then to state that the things worth having are expensive supports a ridiculous financial model of higher ed that is entirely backed by federal loan programs, which contribute directly to the double-digit annual growth rates in the costs of colleges. Colleges building lavish dorms with pools and home theatres in order to attract students, well, that seems to run contrary to all the discussion about the value of Socratic dialogue, when kids are selecting their schools on the basis of what’s on the cafeteria menu versus the curriculum and the teachers themselves.

    I agree this problem is much larger than what’s presented here. I’ve worked at a college, and graduated from two of them. I would still argue that regardless of the methods, and the teachers, it’s up to the student to engage – period. If they want what they think they’re buying, they’ll engage. If not, they’ll expect to be spoon-fed through college, like they have through K-12 – and they’ll cry about it when they don’t get it. 

    These are not adults we’re graduating. I see it in the workplace.

    • #17
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:46 am
  18. Profile photo of Crow's Nest Member
    Trace Urdan: There are plenty of students in large state universities and small private colleges that would be better off receiving skills-based training.ronment to send your kids to. 

    Chris Campion: But frankly, that model does not and cannot apply to all disciplines, and I do not need a philosophical discussion on the merits of capitalism while I’m working up an Excel model on projected cash flows based on historical and predictive factors. What I need is time and a resource to hit up when I get stuck – if I get stuck, badly.

    Gents: The qualities on the kinds of instruction you’ve mentioned here do not contradict the larger argument that Prof. Rahe is making. 

    If I’m a buyer who wants to have an airplane built, then I want an aeronautical engineer who has both a mastery of the principles of physics in understanding what makes a plane fly, and has a successful business track record of hands-on experience building planes that do actually fly!

    The question is whether all things can be boiled down in such a way to a technical skill. All things are not like art of aircraft building.

    • #18
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:49 am
  19. Profile photo of Trace Inactive

    The argument proffered supposes that every classroom experience meets its Socratic ideal which we all know from first-hand experience, is absurd. It also assumes that every student seeking a degree is 18-22 and attending full-time — also false. Finally it ignores the hazy middle ground where most online degrees live between the bike assembly you so condescendingly suggest and the study of Plato.

    Most online degree instruction is in areas that are pre-professional or professional. Is the study of business a worthy academic pursuit? It involves a lot of skill instruction but also demands a regionally-accredited degree to be considered legitimate. It is handled very effectively online despite the fact that the instructor can’t see what the students are wearing.

    What about the registered nurse who needs to complete he BA in order to be promoted into a management position at her hospital? Does her professor need to know what’s on her iPod in order to teach her about the time value of money?

    Just as you are so supremely confident that the President will lose in a landslide Professor! I am equally sure that online degrees are here to stay. 

    • #19
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:49 am
  20. Profile photo of Paul A. Rahe Contributor
    Paul A. Rahe Post author
    Robert McKay: Eight high quality posts in the last five days? Dr. Rahe, you are incredible and you spoil us here at Ricochet! I hope your students realize how very fortunate they are. · 37 minutes ago

    I’m in the hospital. What else can I do?

    • #20
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:50 am
  21. Profile photo of Paul A. Rahe Contributor
    Paul A. Rahe Post author
    Donald Todd: Paul, there was the year I worked for a Catholic parish and spent a large portion of that reading the Russian authors such as Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy and Solzhenitsyn. I wanted to know what they were saying. I remember enjoying them all but Tolstoy.

    Tolstoy was problematic for me. He could make wallpaper sound interesting, but he did not like people. Whenever I finished one of his books, I stopped reading for at least a few days until the vituperation went away. Yet I was assured of his genius. I could read it and understand it.

    To be sure, I read each book, including the two books of the Gulag Archipelago, straight through, as time permitted.

    I may have benefited from a teacher of Russian literature, but then I may have gotten some deconstructionist, or worse, some idiot savant of the Soviet ethic who hated Solzhenitsyn and had been awarded a PhD in Russian literature.

    So I am caught. Did I miss something. Perhaps, but perhaps not, and now I will never know. · 39 minutes ago

    You may have been beyond needing a teacher. The point of a liberal education is to enable students to continue to learn.

    • #21
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:52 am
  22. Profile photo of Mark Lewis Inactive

    I did not get character training in my university experience. I got grades. I got caught up in the postmodern marxist stream I found myself submerged within. It took 5 years and Ayn Rand to begin to question it, another 5 to put it to good use! (Note, the subsequent dozen years have been very good 🙂

    I did have a couple cool professors whose attitude inspired me. However, I never would have been introduced to a book like Soft Despotism through my school/professors. I got it from Uncommon Knowledge. I never would have been turned onto Dennis Prager, Mark Steyn, Jonah Goldberg, Victor Davis Hansen, etc. I personally have gotten a wider “liberal” education in the last 4-5 years than in the previous 20. (Also, more skills-based training, which also rocks!)

    The question becomes, “with whom can I think these through?” A university/environment to have critical discussion, beyond a 140 character limit, or even a 200 word limit — THAT is where I agree – an education in this sense isn’t going to happen online.However, if I was 18 again, I would choose online education over university in a heartbeat.
    • #22
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:54 am
  23. Profile photo of Larry3435 Member

    I’m sorry Professor, but an academic’s lament that the internet is ruining academia sounds to me very much like a reporter’s lament that that the internet is ruining newspapers. Personally, I find that the quality of information I get today is vastly superior to what I used to get when I had to rely on newpapers. And while I haven’t gotten any formal education on line, my memory of 4 years at UCLA is that most of my professors were abysmal (Thomas Sowell being a notable exception). Oh, and I would much rather know how to put a bike together than listen to the grievance-mongering crap kids get taught in many university classes today. Practical knowledge is also part of a well rounded education.

    “A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.”

    -Robert A. Heinlein

    • #23
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:55 am
  24. Profile photo of Paul A. Rahe Contributor
    Paul A. Rahe Post author
    genferei: There are how many millions of ‘university’ students in physical universities? How many dozen have a Bloomlike whole person shaping experience? I’ll give you that such an experience is valuable, but what a staggeringly inefficient way to deliver it. · 27 minutes ago

    Bloom was a wonder, but at almost any institution there are a handful of genuinely inspiring instructors. A young person need only seek them out.

    • #24
    • August 18, 2012 at 9:55 am
  25. Profile photo of Paul A. Rahe Contributor
    Paul A. Rahe Post author
    Trace Urdan: Nonsense. Sloan Consortium has been studying this for 15 years. Many people respond far more effectively in a less public environment in which they feel less vulnerable participating in class discussion. And many instructors respond more readily and effectively to students in an online setting.

    Not everyone can be an effective instructor or learner online but this essay and frankly your endorsementof it Dr. Rahe reflects an uninformed attitude common to traditional academics not borne out by research or even simple first-hand observation but from a legitimate sense of threat.

    Would you not acknowledge the quality of discussion and interaction that takes place in this forum? Would you not acknowledge that it meets or exceeds that of at least some of your own classroom experiences? I know it parallels or exceeds many or mine and I attended excellent, traditional schools. 

    . . . There are plenty of students in large state universities and small private colleges that would be better off receiving skills-based training. · 25 minutes ago

    I am not impressed with Sloan Consortium. Your last sentence makes my point. Training is not what education is about.

    • #25
    • August 18, 2012 at 10:01 am
  26. Profile photo of Mark Lewis Inactive
    I would love a liberal education as described in the article and by Dr. Rahe. I don’t know that a university is the place to get it. Creating that next “learning space” – to be challenged, encouraged, guided, befriended, etc. — we WILL figure out an online version of that, and when we do, things will get very very good. Then, we can have an online class studying the work of Dr. Rahe, learn the material, hear his lectures, watch question and answers, take a test to demonstrate that we understand the basic points, THEN have a real conversation about what it means, how it fits together, and weave together a braid of knowledge from the individual strands of understanding.If that is what Dr. Rahe is aiming towards, I am all for it. I use video skype to coach and consult with entrepreneurs around on 3 different continents. We can create an online learning environment, with both training and education. Ricochet is a “germ;” let’s bring our “innate” love to it! 
    • #26
    • August 18, 2012 at 10:05 am
  27. Profile photo of Crow's Nest Member

    It is striking that many of you think that the universities we see in abundance today–which are very much in decadence–are somehow the university simply or what the university ought to be. 

    Shouldn’t the call be to reform the institution, not abandon its charter altogether? Or is your critique deeper: is it that you think a liberal education is a bunch of airy nonsense?

    To address another issue completely, there are many fields that oughtn’t require a four year degree today which do–we very much ought to reform the professional credentialing process, and very much can be learned by on the job training, depending on the field. But this only seems to enhance the point that a liberal education is not for everyone.

    It would seem, given the above, that reforming the university and reforming the credentialing process would very much satisfy many of your complaints. Remove the students and decadent teachers who oughtn’t be there in the first place, and reform professional training to reflect the needs of the marketplace–these things fit together.

    • #27
    • August 18, 2012 at 10:09 am
  28. Profile photo of Guruforhire Member

    Online education is not just a fire and forget thing. I encourage you to attend the online open house at the kelley school of business or with UNC Chapel Hill.

    The use of video teleconferencing and various other forms of collaborative technologies, is widely used in the corporate space to solve this very problem, and is starting to gain traction for syncronous participatory education. In the education market Adobe connect seems to be the solution most widely used, Cisco and Webex seem to have the corporate space fairly well monopolized.

    Every single one of those objections has been resolved for at least 5 years. The technology and bandwidth is always getting cheaper, and it is the preferred mode for the next generation. There is not a single form of institution that is not going to have to adapt and develop sound and thorough strategies around these technologies.

    • #28
    • August 18, 2012 at 10:13 am
  29. Profile photo of Eric Voegelin Inactive

    Larry3435: I like your Heinlein quote and agree with the basic premise as far as it goes. But many of the pro-online comments compare it to what you get in a typically stultified university today and, yes, the choice is stark. But, if you could afford it, you could go to Hillsdale, Thomas Aquinas or some other school that might have survived intact the past 40 years and get something in a completely different class.

    But, if I were just coming out of high school and couldn’t get into or afford one of the few remaining good schools, I too would get a skill, online or otherwise. But I would seek out wisdom too. The Bible and Plato would be the beginning and then it continues on until you die.

    • #29
    • August 18, 2012 at 10:20 am
  30. Profile photo of Paul A. Rahe Contributor
    Paul A. Rahe Post author
    Chris Campion: A “liberal” education, meaning someone studying classics, languages, political science, etc, does benefit from that back and forth dialogue that is more immediate and present.

    But frankly, that model does not and cannot apply to all disciplines, and I do not need a philosophical discussion on the merits of capitalism while I’m working up an Excel model on projected cash flows based on historical and predictive factors. What I need is time and a resource to hit up when I get stuck – if I get stuck, badly.

    This is the difference between direct, hands-on learning, learning that applies to the real world where projects are assigned and you’re expected to complete them – meaning you do it yourself. Like many students, I need to *do* in order to learn, not to be lectured to, and to then denigrate the online education as a whole because of only one or two areas of study (and I agree that not all studies fit well into the digital model) seems at least disingenuous. · 22 minutes ago

    I agree entirely. For the sort of work that you are talking about, one needs to be well trained.

    • #30
    • August 18, 2012 at 10:22 am
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