The History of Distance Learning

It has become more difficult for people to balance work and education and that is why distance education has become a much used option in this age of limited free time.

More and more people are taking advantage of distance education in order to save time and travel to school. It is much easier to take a course at home when time is available.

According to the CDLP Online Website ” Distance education traces it origins to mid- 19th century Europe and the United States. They used the postal system to open educational opportunities to people who wanted to learn but were not able to attend conventional school.”

The types of people that most benefited from distance education were people with disabilities, people that lived in remote areas that had no schools and women ( schools were not open to women at that time).

The CDLP Online Website mentions that ” an Englishman named Issac Pitman was an early pioneer of distance education. He began by teaching shorthand by correspondence in Bath, England in 1840. Students had to copy short passages of the bible and return them by mail. American university level education began in 1874 at Illinois Wesleyan university where bachelor and graduate degrees could be obtained in absentia. The Chautauqua movement in about 1882 gave the popular push to correspondence education.”

” The invention of the radio in the 1920’s and the advent of television in the 1940’s enabled distance education to reach more people.”

Teleconferencing that became popular in the 1980’s and the 1990’s enabled students and teachers to communicate with one another through computers linked through telephone lines. Computer conferencing through the internet has also been used for teachers and students to share files and information and to be able to communicate with each other.

The military and businesses use distance education for training and education.

Correspondence schools have evolved and offer both academic and vocational programs. There are many schools that offer college degree programs through the internet.

There are also several states that have offered schooling and high schooling through correspondence.

It is important for distance education schools to have instructors that are able to communicate with one another and for students to be able to seek help and advice from the instructors when needed. At times the bond between students and instructors is stronger as it is more one on one collaboration than in traditional schools.

Distance education has come a long way since its inception and it continues to grow and evolve with the inception of more modern technology. There are a great many courses that are offered by this method and it is usually more cost friendly than traditional schooling. More and more people take advantage of this method of learning and advancing themselves.