You want to learn a foreign language, but you don’t know whether you should attend an actual school and sit in actual classes or take the course online. You may have reservations about both. Maybe you think that by attending an actual physical class, you’ll have more opportunities to ask the instructor questions and get extra help if you need it. The thought of taking the courses at your own pace and in the comfort of your own home via online courses, also may sound appealing.
Whether you take online classes or attend a brick and mortar school, the one that will be best for you will depend on your schedule, how much you’re willing to spend and commit to, and your learning style and preferences.
If you’re on the fence, here are some pros and cons for both classroom and online learning:
Traditional Classroom Learning
Before the Internet and computers, foreign languages, like other educational subjects were taught in a physical classroom.
- Ideal for Those Who Have the Time. Students like retirees who don’t mind the time to commute to and from the class and sit in a class would better enjoy in-person classes.
- Ideal for Older Adults Who May not be Tech-Savvy. Those who didn’t grow up on computers or worked on computers might get frustrated and overwhelmed taking an online course.
- Better Learning Environment for Some Students. Classroom learning offers a stable, distraction-free environment that can result in better, focused learning for some students.
- Classroom learning requires students to set aside a significant amount of time to not only attend the class, but to also do homework.
- Can be Frustrating For Commuting and Parking. Classes at a school not only take up time you sit in a classroom, but you also have to set aside time for commuting and parking.
- Can’t do Anything About the Speed of the Course. Classroom learning may be too slow or fast for you, but you can’t do anything about it.
- Office Hours Are the Only Way to Get Additional Help. To stay on schedule, the instructor can go at a fast pace. If you’re confused, you have to make room in your schedule to attend the instructor’s office hours.
The accessibility of the Internet, the affordability of computers and Smartphones and people’s increasingly busy schedules have given online learning a big boost in popularity.
- You can take your class anytime, anywhere.
- Access to Instructors. Many online classes now have live chats, email and video-conferencing available between students and instructors.
- Online courses now provide the same hands-on, interactive learning taught in in-person classes.
- Ideal for Those With Busy Lives. Children, parents, busy professionals and young people will enjoy the small time commitment of online classes.
- Less Burnout and More Manageable Content. You can go at your own pace, meaning you can take in as much or as little of the class as your schedule allows. The bite-size chunks makes learning less intimidating.
- May Seem Impersonal. Watching people or slides on a computer screen can make students feel removed, unimportant and distant. To combat this, programs like Arab Academy include video conferencing so you can show things to your instructor as well as build a more humanized relationship with your instructor.
- May Not Work Together With or See Classmates. With many online courses, there is limited collaboration and group activities among classmates.
At Arab Academy, we offer reputable, world-recognized online Arabic language courses that have been used in various high schools and colleges across the globe. Our courses are taught by native Arabic speakers and feature numerous interactive activities that emphasize vocabulary, speaking, listening and comprehension and that you can access 24/7!
If you are set on a classroom-based program, consider ArabicInCairo.com!