The lives of millions of students, amid the COVID pandemic, have shrunken to their phone screens inside their houses since online education becomes the latest wave of learning.

Celebrated Astro Strategist™ cum Business Astrologer™ says, “Information technology has revolutionized many things including our way of learning. These days more and more people are opting to earn their degrees and diplomas online, thanks to the Internet, and also the pandemic has left many of us with no other option.”

 Hirav Shah explains, “Online education was started so that students get a chance to reach their academic goals without giving up on their personal commitments such as family and full-time employment. Besides that, online education courses are far cheaper to obtain compared to conventional institutions, due to factors such as flexibility and overhead costs.”

Advantages of Online Education:

1.Flexibility – You can schedule your time around your personal commitments such as a full-time job or family because the hours are so flexible.

2.Reduced expense – There is a significant reduction in expenses in areas such as travel expenses, housing costs, child-care, and loss of earnings. Online learning also saves time as no time spent commuting to classes.

3.Your geographic location does not affect your learning process. All you need is a phone/computer and a reliable fast Internet connection.

4.You do not have to keep up with the pace of the class. This works well for those who seem to always be ahead of or behind the group.

5.You can benefit from online learning even in conditions when your health isn’t too well which might otherwise keep you out of class. 

  1. Easy and instant access to learning resources like the library, the teacher, and the other students are only a click away.

Disadvantages of Online Education :

1.Lack of face to face interaction with other students will reduce learning and study opportunities with your peers.

2.Require that the student is disciplined enough to be able to work independently.

3.If you are the type of student that performs better with the aid of visual or verbal cues you may be at a disadvantage.

4.You may be required to set your own deadlines which require more motivation and self-discipline than traditional classroom settings which usually have a set end-of-term date.

5.You may have a delay to have your questions answered by email or on a discussion board.

6.More potential for miscommunication due to misinterpreted written instructions.

But Hirav Shah also says, “Spending more time on online platforms is risky!”

Spending more time on online platforms encourages the risk of sexual exploitation involving voracious adults building digital relationships with gullible children and pressurizing and trapping them into sexual activities. The void of face-to-face contact with partners and friends may encourage immoral activities like sharing inappropriate images.

Hirav Shah lists down the effects of online classes on students of different age groups and what major changes are observed in their behavior due to excessive screen time.

Effects of online classes on Teens

The brain goes through major transformations during the teen years. This is why teens are especially vulnerable to the effects of screen time on emotional well-being and brain function.

◆ Learning: Hirav Shah says that young adults and kids who spend a lot of time on TV and video games are twice as likely to suffer from attention disorders.

◆ Self-confidence: More time playing games or watching videos on digital devices means less time exploring and creating their own stories, experiences, or art.

◆ Social skills: Online experiences can build creativity and foster communication. But teens and tweens might hide behind the screen to avoid awkward or tricky conversations, like approaching a crush or making new friends.

◆ Emotions and personality: Hirav Shah also observes that young men who play violent video games get linked to more aggression and less sensitivity towards others. Also, Shah says that game and internet addiction can shrink the brain cells responsible for empathy, planning, compassion, and impulse control.

◆ Sleep: Screen time can have damaging effects on sleep for kids and young adults.

◆ Learning: Screen time also robs the kids of unstructured playtime, which is crucial for problem-solving and learning.

◆ Language skills: Hirav Shah notices that digital devices can affect language development in kids by displacing time spent interacting with friends and family.

◆ Emotional development: Hirav Shah also worries that using smartphones as “shut-up” toys to keep the children busy during day-to-day tasks like shopping, grocery buying, or eating out might prevent them from learning how to regulate distress, boredom, and other emotions and impulses.

◆ Eyesight: Many countries, in recent years, are experiencing epidemic levels of short-sightedness or myopia, and indoor time may be to blame.

Stress is created in students because of virtual classes as it is a change from their normal structure and they are not accustomed to the new way of learning. Parents might start noticing behavioral changes in their kids such as refusals, excessive arguments, opposition, withdrawal, or defiance.

Business Strategist Hirav Shah in conclusion says, “As hard as online teaching might be, it’s likely even harder for students. They’ve gone from classrooms explicitly designed to support learning, to bedrooms and kitchen tables where distractions are many and expert support isn’t present all the time. It comes as no surprise that many students will be tempted to opt-out.

Both online and offline cultures can go hand in hand, to put things in perspective. Technology-based education is based on decoding how to involve students and continue education in the absence of traditional educational institutions, thereby assisting students in mastering topics on their own.

The development of a hybrid learning model will ensure that our students enjoy the best of both the physical and digital worlds. The positive prospects of online education, however, outweigh the negative implications and we should be ready to acclimatize with the advancements.”