Distance learning is gaining huge popularity. But how does it really compare to being on campus?

distance learning

Technology has made it easier than ever to get a quality education. Live webinars are latest generation lectures; remote chats are the new tutorials, and course content is readily available online.


Distance learning is now firmly part of the establishment, but can it compare to the live campus experience? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of online education versus traditional campus-bound learning.


Online education: the on-demand solution for everyone

Learning online is a worldwide phenomenon. In the USA, one in four students is studying remotely. Right here at home, the University of South Africa (Unisa) pioneered the concept of Open Distance Learning (ODL) decades ago.


Today, the best universities in the country have rolled out certified online short courses. If you factor in the explosive growth of digital campuses offering diploma and degree courses in a wide range of subjects, then it appears that distance learning is clearly trending all over the world.


But why is it so popular? Cost, convenience and flexibility are obvious benefits of remote learning.


Pros of distance learning

Online courses cost a lot less than campus courses. The online study material is usually included in the rate, and there are no travelling, parking, or child caring expenses to consider. You’ll eat all your meals at home, and sleep in your own bed.



Opt to study remotely, and you can choose when and where you want to learn. It’s a convenient solution for people with families or full-time jobs who want to improve their education at the same time.


You can clear the spare room of clutter, and store the valuable items in a secure facility using the convenient online services of a valet storage supplier.


Distance learning is readily available to anyone, anywhere. Provided there’s reliable internet connectivity, living in remote rural areas is no longer a barrier to education.



Online courses are available on-demand. That means you can go through course content, write assignments, and prepare for exams whenever you have a spare moment in your day.


If you don’t understand a concept, you can repeat classes or lectures at the click of a button. In other words, you have the freedom to learn at your own pace.


Disadvantages of online education

Missing out on sports, social activities and networking is the key disadvantage of studying online. Campuses are abuzz with young people from different backgrounds. Online, you’ll miss out on many opportunities to interact with and learn about others, make friends, and generally broaden your horizons.


Online education is not suitable for everyone. You have to have excellent time management skills, and be self-disciplined to succeed. If you are easily distracted or tend to procrastinate, distance learning is not for you.


Why choose the campus experience?

Campus life is fun and fulfilling. For those who can afford it, it’s one of life’s great experiences – not just academically, but socially too.


Studying on campus is a structured and sociable way of getting a degree or diploma. You’ll have the opportunity to interact face to face with lecturers, tutors and peers; form lifelong friendships, and set the ground work for future business networks.


Student storage, on demand

Whether you learn online or on campus, XtraSpace offers a storage solution that’s ideal for students.


During term, store your extra stuff – including boxes and bulky individual items like bikes or surf boards – to avoid cluttering up cramped digs. And during the holidays, store your belongings with us so you don’t have to lug them long distances.


Using XtraSpace, you could also clear the clutter from a spare bedroom, leaving it free to rent out for some extra income or so you can convert it into an ideal study space. Contact us for more information.


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