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The advantages and benefits of online learning

Online study can be a solution for you

Online learning offers a number of advantages.
Online learning offers a number of advantages.
Image: 123RF/Aleksandr Davydov

The idea that online students are “not smart enough” or so “lazy” that they don’t get “real degrees" discourages many people from taking online courses. The misconception makes them feel they need to opt for traditional education, which costs money and time they simply don’t have.

Yet, online learning offers a number of advantages – none bigger than the fact that training can take place anywhere and anytime. 

These are the advantages:

Learn whatever you want

The great variety of available online programmes and courses is a huge advantage. It doesn’t matter where you live and what you want to study – you can always find a suitable course that you can study from home.


You are not bound to physical class sessions when you study online. All lectures and needed materials are provided via online platforms, which you can easily access from the comfort of your home or office, cutting out travelling time and costs.

Self-paced learning

A self-paced learning system allows you to make progress at any time that works best to suit your individual needs. For example, if you have to work or take care of children during the day, you can study at night. 

Online learning provides further benefits:

Immediate results and feedback: Most online learning technologies integrate online quizzes and other tools to evaluate and provide feedback on the pace of learning more rapidly.

Better retention: With clever design, user experience, and multimedia, online instruction can provide a richer and more effective learning experience than traditional methods and channels.

Up-to-date content at a lower cost: Knowledge of most subjects continues to grow and evolve, which means that expensive textbooks become unreliable (and useless) in a very short period. The remote delivery of curriculum enables instructors to keep materials up to date, and the lower costs over time remove what for some are great obstacles to furthering their education.

A better fit for 21st-century businesses: As companies become more globally focused, employees are more likely to work in different places, if not on different continents. Online learning can prepare them better to excel in today’s virtual offices. 

The best thing about online learning is that you need only passion for learning and a quick online search to take you to the right course. From that point on, you can be the master of your own education.

About Wits Plus

Wits Plus, the Centre for Part-Time Studies at the University of Witwatersrand, offers selected undergraduate degrees, as well as a wide range of short courses. Evening classes make all qualifications accessible to working people. Wits Plus also offers a growing range of online short courses that enable you to study when it suits you.

Visit Wits Plus, Centre for Part Time Studies and Wits DigitalCampus, call +27 11 717 9510 or email wits.plus.marketing@wits.ac.za for more information.

This article was paid for by Wits Plus