Distance Learning is the method of studying where student personally need not to attend any school or college instead he/she can learn from broadcast lectures or by correspondence classes over conference.
It is a field of education where focus is on technology and instructional system design that delivers education to students who can’t attend classes physically (Off-site location). Teleconference, Web based classes etc. are the methods adopted in distance education.
Distinguishing in broad manner, following methods are used for Distance Learning:
1. Audio based learning
This type of method includes one way and two way communication.
Examples: Radio broadcasting, Recorded CDs, Teleconference
2. Video based learning
This type of learning is further subdivided into two types:
Prerecorded Video - Recorded videos are used
Interactive Video - An interactive session is organized using satellite, camera and TV
3. Internet based learning
This method needs internet facility where education is imparted online by websites and bulletin boards. It is very cost effective and hence is gaining popularity.
Examples: Online MBA coaching, Online Certification training etc.
University of London was the first university to offer distance learning for its International programmes which includes UG, PG and Diploma. Presently number of universities and colleges offer distance education courses which gained popularity because of computer revolution.