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I work with the Hispanic Scholarship Fund. Recently I have been working on a program to talk to our community about Financial Aid and Education option for Adult Learners. It seems that as soon as i get to the part about how Online education is an option people immediately cut the conversation short and say "I cant do online stuff" or something to the effect of "Online education is not for me"

Many of these people don't really know what online education is all about or how there are some scholarship opportunities for them. I personally prefer the traditional university setting but i didn't have to worry about paying rent and taking care of a family while i was studying.

I have seen articles and studies that argue both ways but My experience has been that we as a people have a negative outlook on the idea as a whole.

Anyways just wanted to throw it out there.

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These are good points Frank. I do think you're right in stating that some classes lend them themselves to certain topics better. Indeed, chemestry, is a great example. However, online technology and delivery options have increased tremendously over the last couple of years. Instructors can now use video, audio, streams, instant messaging, and a host of other tools to deliver certain type of classes. Online will never replace face to face interaction - however - the modality is not meant to serve as a replacement but rather an alternative learning environment. As I noted in my response, it is not for everyone. Individuals learn differently and prefer certain learning approaches. Your comment on culture is also interesting. As collectivists (Hispanics) tend to enjoy team and community oriented environments. Team needs take preference over individual needs. From my experience as an online instructor, I see that bonding daily in my classes. Students share a lot online that they wouldn't otherwise in a face to face situation -- hence, it increases the value of the class interaction. I think Hispanic students that I've come across (including myself) enjoy the interaction and community environment online classrooms can provide. Thanks for your perspective Frank!
jonathan the problem is they dont believe that the online education has the same standards that the traditional university. I can tell you for my own experience, I attended the Phoenix university online (http://www.phoenix.edu/) to get my master, but for the people it was like I was not attending a "real" university.

Education is the Key! they have to understand all the benefits and to see that at the end you will have a diploma like a regular university.
Hi Jeymy -- I think your experience is very common. While there are a lot of stereotypes of traditional vs. online universities, I think a lot of this perception comes from either not knowing how online classrooms work and/or assuming online universities are not academically viable. As I noted in my initial post above, I've had the opportunity to attend both and found both environments challenging - but in different ways. The opportunity to stretch my learning style and approach was greatly enhanced via online learning. Comparisons are and should be made between both types of colleges; however, one should not assume that one is better than the other simply because it's been around longer. The arguments have been made in the past between traditional colleges - with some being better than others. I attended a state school that is nowhere on the radar map when it comes to "top-tier" colleges. But I got a tremendous education by going there (and it was lot cheaper, too!). The reality is that a college student will get out of their education what he or she puts into it. Thanks for your comments Jeymy
Thank you all for all your great input!!!!! you all make very valid points.... i agree that online education is not meant to be a replacement but an alternative to the traditional university setting. Although Distance learning is not for everyone i feel that it can really help the Latino community that work full time and are full time parents.
Thanks Jonathan -- glad the input is helping. Just so you know, schools like UOP and other for-profits enroll and graduate the highest number of Hispanic and other minority students in the country. Thanks again.


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