A Traditional Class vs.

an Online Class As technology progresses substantially, it has bearings on every area of our life, even on the way of learning. At present, we could either attend traditional classes in brick-andmortar learning institutions, or virtual classes in online universities and colleges. Despite sharing some superficial similarities, the differences between a traditional class and an online class are remarkable. Both types of learning require instruction from teachers, and have comparable method of assessments. Though, they differ from one another in terms of scheduling, learning process, and communication.

The first distinction between a traditional class and an online class is scheduling. Traditional class requires a fixed place or environment for learning and teaching. This restricts the number of students that can study at the same time. Number of students would depend on the size of class and learning institution. Furthermore, traditional class is not flexible as it requires the students and teachers to attend a particular place at specific times. For example, students of traditional class have the responsibility to show up for class to meet attendance requirement (Quality Distance Education at your Fingertips, n.d.). Therefore it is not convenient for full-time workers since they would have difficulties in arranging free time to attend the class. On the other hand, online class allows unlimited number of students learn at the same time, which only requires connection to the network for accessing into the virtual class. It is also possible that students from different countries gather in one class. Students can allocate their time easily to pursue their studies in virtual classes. This is because online environment does offer distinct opportunities for flexible, student-centered learning. Logan, Elisabeth,


Journals. reference books. Distance learners should be independent and highly-discipline in order to achieve outstanding online learning (Kokemuller.Rebecca Augustyniak. mentions that students that favour of reliance on independent learning skills would be more suited to an online class. as cited by Diaz and Cartnal (1999). nevertheless they are similar in term of way in accessing for information.). Besides. online class can frequently schedule real-time discussion to do their assignment or project while traditional class discussion normally required participants to show up. as cited by Diaz and Cartnal (1999). and Alison Rees (2002). Materials like lecture notes. tutorial notes. as cited by Driscoll et al. Learning process is another aspect that differs online class from traditional class. Only perseverance can promise for the success of online learning. Library is the place which students could find more information about courses. By contrast. All materials of studies are basically available in online classes and other external websites. Blackmore (1996). students are required to take responsibility for their own education and are forced to be proactive in the learning process. flexibility of online classes allows students to attend classes at anytime and anywhere. Traditional class would be more book-approached. reference books. In short. recommends that the thing teachers can do to aid the 19 . (2012). and text books are necessary for traditional classes.d. n. the learning process of online class basically relies on the computer and Internet. whereas students of traditional classes need to comply with rigid time table for completing their studies. says that within online class. James and Gardner (1995). For traditional class. students would need to go to brick-and-mortar learning institution for pursuing their studies. dictionaries and dissertations are available in library which students can turn to.

in which they could then react immediately to rectify matters that may have gone amiss. However. which is delivering the information to the student. For instance. students can feel the distinction between traditional classes and online classes in term of learning process. Therefore. formal communication takes place in virtual classes. the online environment could provide a more comfortable venue for participation among students who are shy or lack of confidence and who may be intimidated by the public 20 . or in class discussion forum. which is the Internet. There is considerable distinction in term of method of communication between traditional class and online class. instructors of traditional classes could observe their students by looking and interpreting students’ facial expressions or signs of inattention. yet both of them share same objective. In contrast.learning process is simply to be alert that there are diverse learning styles in the student population. social network. students of both types of classes could reach to same platform to access for information. unlike online class. Traditional class applies face-to-face learning method that allows teacher interact directly with students. Students could also have informal communication with peers as they could meet up with peers in person frequently in traditional classes. online class is devoid of direct interaction between students and teacher. Usually. yet Internet is the common ground for students of both classes to gain more knowledge on course. Students would need to communicate with instructors and peers via e-mail. According to Clark-Ibáñez and Scott (2008). Both types of learning need students to surf Internet to gain more knowledge regarding on particular matters of subjects. On the contrary. students could meet up with the instructors either in class or during consultation hour.

as cited by Relan and Gillani (1997). Generally. pp. both types of communication are necessary to convey message to students so that students can gain more knowledge in their studies. Students would need to attend traditional classes regularly to gain more knowledge regarding their courses. 1984. In traditional class. Both types of learning fully rely on teaching from professors or lecturers. an online learner can view the learning materials at his or her own convenience as there are several instructors who present the learning materials in live mode. instructors would need to turn up for class and present learning materials. There are several resemblances between traditional class and online class. Nevertheless. Hence. Students were moderately busy on assignments predetermined by teachers. As for online classes. Goodlad (1984). Teachers and students were busy covering' what was set forth in the textbooks and workbooks. instructors should play as mentors of distance learners by providing academic assistance and encouraging students to participate actively in online forum or 21 . communication in both traditional class and online class is significant although communication in traditional class is more direct and informal than online class. depicts scenario for “traditional class instruction”: Not "how" but "what' to learn dominated consistently. apart from the significant distinctions discussed.d. or even interact one-on-one with students (Tucker.). the subject matter studied appeared to be remote from daily concerns and interests of the students (Goodlad. 13-14). have pre-recorded their lectures. 2012). Instructors play crucial roles in conveying information and guiding students throughout the course. Teacher instruction is indispensable in both traditional class and online class. Nevertheless.setting of a face-to-face classroom (Driscoll et al. n..

Teacher sets the time limits for the test completion and the test can be either closed-book or open-book exam (Tucker. For the traditional class. peer-review assignment nowadays is not only available for traditional classes. unless students send the assignment electronically to each other. students are required to interact with instructors and glean information in both traditional class and virtual class. for distance learners of online courses of University of Delaware could take tests through ProctorU. and per-exam fee is charged (University of Delaware Online Exams. Webcam and microphone are required for the online tests. On the contrary. In short. a platform which students can complete tests at home online. For instance. In addition. For example. both types of learning have same method of assessments which comprise of formal tests and assignments (Is Online for Me? Classroom vs.). a free online education platform. Therefore whether online class or traditional class is being chosen. n.d. 22 . In addition. n.. Online.discussions on the subject of their courses (Stansfield et al. It is very obvious that method of assessments of both traditional class and online class is identical. 2013). students can often grade each other’s work or edit each other’s written assignment but online class can hardly to carry out this task. tests conducted in online class are quite exclusive. 2004). in which students would use grading rubric to rate other assessments from other students (Pedagogy. n. most assignments of online courses available in Coursera. but also for online class.).d. offer peer assessments. both classes also have the similarity that tests are conducted to identify what have students really understand from the courses. Students would have to sit for tests in their respective learning institutions. However.).com.d. there would be an assignment to be completed and the assignment must be instructed by the teachers.

like fixed scheduling versus flexible scheduling. book-based learning process versus technology-based learning process. and face-to-face communication versus online communication. we could experience several distinctions between traditional class and online class. As we have concerned. only different particular characters would suit to either traditional class or online class. 23 . Learning plays a significant role in our life. Nevertheless. Both traditional class and online class have same purpose: to convey information to learners. we would need to identify our personality and preference before making choice between these two alternatives. these differences do not extinguish their similarities. in which both types of learning rely on instructions from teachers. and knowledge is an asset for us which could be used to deal with daily occurrences. Hence. and have same method of assessment.As conclusion.

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