The Growth of e-Learning
The way education is imparted is changing rapidly. For the past hundred years, the general method of imparting education included a teacher, students and actual textbooks. Despite the rising popularity of the Internet, mobile gadgets and tablets, education was confined to classrooms where students were expected to be physically present along with their textbooks and learning tools.
However, all that is set to change with the introduction of online courses via the Internet. E-learning is projected to grow stupendously and the winds of change will affect education and training at all levels.
Why is e-learning so Popular?
The availability of unrestricted, business-category Internet connectivity and ready availability of interactive, media-rich online courses has changed the growth potential of e-learning. The sector is evolving rapidly as more and more online training materials become available on the Internet. There are several institutes that offer online courses on anything and everything from project management and human resource management to marketing and software applications.
Most popular courses include interactive step-by-step guides, ‘how to’ videos, online course notes with multimedia analysis and links to other informative sites. Such courses can be used by a range of businesses to educate and train their employees in new advancements and hone their existing skills.
E-learning is beneficial to both organisations and employees. With online courses, organisations can train their employees conveniently, efficiently and quickly right from the comforts of their own workplace. For employees, such online courses offer accredited and recognised qualifications that enhance their CV, thereby furthering their career prospects.
In fact, such is the demand for e-learning that many recognised training institutes are now offering professional courses for virtual tutors to facilitate e-learning on a professional level.
E-learning Today & Tomorrow: A Few Facts
Learning through a virtual classroom is super easy, affordable and practical too; given the fact that professionals today hardly have the time to improve their knowledge through actual classroom attendance. The growing acceptability of e-learning is borne out by the facts underscored by a European survey conducted in 2011.
According to this survey in 2011 almost 51% of companies depended on online courses to deliver at least one training module to more than 50% of employees. This is a rise from 39% in 2010 (other parameters remaining the same). Of all the companies using e-learning, approximately 47% are about to intensify their usage of online courses by blending them with regular training materials.
Also, e-learning is the most preferred approach for about 76% of all companies surveyed to train their employees. E-learning is most popular with the services sector with more than 43% of companies opting for this training model for their employees.
Currently, global expenditure on e-learning is pegged at $91bn p.a. approximately (2012 figures) and is poised to grow at a healthy rate of 23% p.a. till 2017. Another survey indicates that the global market for online courses, which was $20.5 billion in 2010, is expected to reach $49.9 billion in 2015.
So these are rather exciting times for those associated with the e-learning sector. The future looks bright with more and more users at every level realising the tremendous benefit of e-learning. The trend shows a gradual shift to virtual classes and in the near future, e-learning looks set to become the most preferred method of gaining education, knowledge and training.