In the face of industries experiencing a slump and struggling for survival, healthcare continues to grow and expand. It continues to attract new talent ready to serve and strive for the betterment of others. The impact of healthcare is not limited to health only; it is connected to the economy as well. Therefore, competent employees with cutting-edge knowledge and skills are always needed to perform their job.
However, in this regard, the pandemic has completely changed how people got their education and job training. Social distancing measures confining people in their houses forced people to enroll in remote programs and be part of virtual training programs. Since then, online education has become a new trend. Now more people prefer online education than being part of sitting in the classroom.
How Has Online Education Benefited Healthcare?
Online education tremendously benefited healthcare, attracting thousands of individuals to enroll in distant learning programs when there was an acute shortage of skilled workers. Workers could not leave the workplace to be part of on-campus programs. In this regard, nursing has been no exception. In 2020, there was a 5.6% increase in enrollment in nursing programs, thanks to the introduction of various online nursing degrees such as BSN to MSN online programs. With online education, more nurses can work on the ground but, at the same time, earn new skills to enhance their eligibility for higher roles.
But the idea of the efficacy of online education is not shared by all in the same manner. Therefore, this article presents a general view of online education, offering both sides. You will know why it is better, but at the same time, what makes it more difficult than in-person education.
Why Is Online Education Better For Healthcare Workers?
Let’s start with why healthcare professionals should get online education instead of sitting in an on-campus program.
- Not Limited By Physical Boundaries
The first obvious benefit is that any physical boundaries do not limit it. You could live in a far-flung area and listen to professors from across the world. Professionals who work all day detest the idea of going to a classroom, even on the weekends. They could listen to the lectures while comfily sitting on their couch. Busy mothers can be taking these classes after they are done with work and putting their children to sleep.
- No Transport Expense
In online education, transportation costs and the hassle of commute reduce tremendously. You are not running after public busses to reach your campus or burning fuel in your vehicle. Apart from cost, transportation is time-consuming too. Most of the time you spend traveling can be used to do something productive.
- Online Education Is Affordable
We all know that healthcare education is not cheap. In the case of online education, the institution can slash many of its variable expenses. They don’t have to arrange a physical setup for the classes and have administrators manage the sound, video, etc. There is no need for janitors to keep the classes clean or the management to pay mounting utility bills that are otherwise dropped at their doorstep at the start of each month. The only requirement is to pay for the lecturer’s salaries. All the tests and homework are distributed and marked online. Students submit their work through the portal, where it is automatically marked based on the key provided.
- No Housing Cost
Many students travel from their cities to other locations to get healthcare education because not all institutions have a reputation for providing better education. This means they have to pay for the accommodation, food, and other expenses during their stay away from the house; this can increase their financial burden. Online education eliminates this need altogether. You can still get the best education without having to travel to big cities.
- Students Can Continue Their Education At Their Own Pace
The life of a healthcare professional is very hectic. They have extended working hours and extreme workloads to manage. They can’t take classes on time every day and manage the pace of their study. Online education is suitable because it gives them the freedom to manage their own pace of learning. Depending on their understanding, they may spend more time on a concept or skip a lecture altogether. Given the convenience of studying at your own pace, students feel less burdened and stressed and can manage their studies much well.
Why Is Online Education Difficult?
The pros of online education make it the best choice for healthcare workers, and many people support this claim. But online education is not without its cons either. Here are a few of them.
- Communication Difficulty And Limited Social Interaction
This is one of the biggest problems that students face during online education. Healthcare education is very complicated, requiring you to understand complex bodily mechanisms, systems, and organ functions. You need the help of your teachers all the time. You also need to interact with your classmates, which is impossible, unlike in traditional classes.
Though you can contact your teachers through emails, video conferencing, and other digital applications, meeting them face to face reduces your confusion considerably. For some students, technology-driven modes of communication might even be a preference, but it can be a hurdle for others. It is advised to such students to never hesitate and be with their teacher when you need them. Have frequent meetings and ask away your queries.
- Cost Of Technology
With online education, you always need a stable internet connection, software program, and devices to help you record and listen to the lectures. New students may have to learn computer and troubleshooting skills. Some may have to buy new devices such as laptops which are costly. Though you will get the return when you become a professional, they are expensive when equipment is purchased.
Some solutions include taking your classes at your workplace if your employer permits. You can do so during breaks or after the shift. This way you can use the official computer and the internet.
Online education has its pros and cons, but the pros seem to overpower the cons. Hence, it is not difficult to say that online education is better and easier than on-campus education. Its convenience, low cost, and flexibility of space and time are often the deal makers for professionals. Due to these factors, online education is the need of the hour today.