The emergence of online courses
The history of online courses is a relatively short one, and had to wait for the development of the internet. Electronic computers were made from the 1940s yet their use was limited whilst they remained so large and expensive. It was the invention of computers and internet that made online courses both practical and affordable.
The development of the microchip allowed for personal computers to be smaller than the average living room and laptops that allowed people to work from home, or whilst travelling. Before the internet there was no means of completing a degree without going to university even if only for a short period. Students could attend courses on evenings, weekends or residential stays yet they could not complete an entire course remotely.
That all changed in the mid 1990s when online courses first became available. These courses worked in much the same way as ordinary degrees as soon as ways to submit coursework and complete exams were put in place.
The development of online university courses was in many ways a logical step to make higher education courses available for people that were unable to fit attending a course on the campus due to family or work commitments. The internet was ideal for students to find the information to complete their coursework and research, and also as a way to submit their work remotely.
Students are provided with guidelines on how to complete their courses to make sure that all work is up to the required standards, and put through plagiarism checks prior to submissions being accepted.
Online degree courses are flexible for institutions and students, and that allowed the concept to grow significantly over the last twenty years or so. It is a development that suits both universities and students, as more people receive the education that they want while the universities have a higher number of graduates than before. It is a situation that suits everyone concerned, and seems set to continue over the long term.
Online courses greatly increase the scope for universities to offer a wider selection of courses and for more people to become students. Online courses allow universities to have more students than there could by physical space for at their campus. People that could not to away to study have found online courses ideal for achieving their academic or vocational education goals without having to give up their jobs, or reduce their family commitments.
This kind of course became widespread and popular as it allows students to study at the times that are most suitable for them, and to study around their busy lives. The concept has allowed countless numbers of students get degrees who otherwise would not have studied.
There has been a rise in vocational degrees courtesy of online courses, and MBAs are among the most popular courses, with universities keen to offer as many places as possible. MBAs are also degrees that carry a lot of prestige and passing one with a good grade can allow the graduate to go further in their business career.
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