Online education or E-learning?

Online education is the way of education when students interact with teacher by using the Internet. This form of education includes all components which are necessary for studying process. It helps to get an additory qualification or scientific degree.

The history of online education appearance

In the late 90s and early 2000s, the development of the Internet began. Various materials have appeared in the online space with the rise of Internet users. Books, tutorials, various open-access tests began to appear and it was a very big plus for all. Then new opportunities for learning languages was opened. Now you can communicate with foreign users via email and ICQ. A few years later, a soft named Skype was launched and received widespread use in 2003. In the Skype you could make high-quality free calls over the Internet. With the development of the Internet online education began to move to a new level and Skype became the program that most teachers began to use. The next development in online education was the emergence of online presentations that allow users to show in real time what is happening on the screen of the narrator. In 2010, Skype added screen sharing feature. It is this function that allowed teachers to demonstrate the materials being studied to students without delays in real time. It was after these advances in technology that the effectiveness and attractiveness of online lessons noticeable increased.

Reasons of online education popularity

The role of online education has increased in recent years. This is due to the fact that the influence of the Internet has greatly risen. Online education attracts many people because of its availability, relevance and speed. Most students choose to study online because they can save time and money. After all, in a relatively short period of time, education via the Internet makes it possible to gain practical skills and knowledge, as well as users like simplicity, financial attractiveness and the very method of this training. There is an opportunity to complete a course of study consisting of standard lectures and sometimes from video lectures through Internet resources.

Get a detailed view of online education advantages:

  • opportunity to study anywhere and anytime;
  • tuition is quite reduced;
  • students living in remote areas have an access to education;
  • many opportunities to contribute the exchange of information between the student and the teacher;
  • access to a huge number of Internet resources on various topics. 

Disadvantages of online education:

  • excess amount of information which makes the navigate in the Internet impossible;
  • the feeling of isolation, lack of communication;
  • don’t develop social skills;
  • inability to independently organize the learning process.

Some information about E-learning area

E-learning has been used since 1999 and meant general term used to describe range of electronic technologies (television, radio, CDs, mobile phones, the Internet and so on) in education with focus on studying by using Internet.

Now, E-learning area is based on multi-user online courses (massive open online courses, MOOC) using the shareware model. Online resources offer to take a course of studying, consisting of standard lectures, sometimes video lectures, get knowledge and then if you wish, you can pay for testing and get a certificate confirming the knowledge gained. Also, such resources offer fully paid courses, which are mainly represented by certain IT corporations.

If we talk about IT companies, we can notice a tendency to invest in the field of online programming training (buying a part of Geek Brains Group, actively including Yandex in the work of Netology or courses from Intel or Goggle on sites like Courser or Intuit). This suggest that companies are interested in good specialists because very often with a theoretical course they give practical tasks that are inseparably connected with the case and also offer internships to students, which give real chances of employment, while independently assessing skills and knowledge of each.

At the moment, the entire E-learning system can be divided into two segments:

  • B2B (business to business)
  • B2C (business to client)

B2B are corporate MOOCs. They were created for training, staff development and individual educational solutions.

B2C is a segment of MOOCs, which has access to massive open online courses with interactive participation, designed for an unlimited number of students. These are videos on YouTube, social networks, etc. It can be Skype-training and mobile soft.

The most important difference between these segments is consumer of the service. If in B2C, it is an individual. In B2B it is organization that purchases this service for its employees.

Russian area of online education

J’son & Partners Consulting appreciated the education area with the presence of more than 50 large projects with approximately tens of thousands of listeners.

Key figures and facts:

  • several million listeners;
  • tens of thousands and in some cases more than 100 thousand registered users at the largest MOOC sites;
  • the cost of courses ranges from several thousand rubles to several tens of thousands, depending on the subject, duration of the course and details;
  • more than 50 sites on the area;
  • 2 million people in Russia at least once trained online;
  • approximately 78% of listeners are studying English;
  • websites preparing for the exam and giving programming skills.

Online education statistics

According to the results of the Frost & Sullivan research, in 2013 the revenue of enterprises amounted to $ 162 million. Diagram 1 presents the global online education area.

The diagram shows that the online education market is the most prevalent in Europe (44%), and the lowest in South America, which was only 3%.

Some information about the online education area:

  • in 2013, the revenue of enterprises amounted to $ 162 million (according to the results of the study Frost & Sullivan);
  • for 2015 the global online education area is rated at $ 107 billion;
  • in 2016 the Russian online education area equaled 20.7 billion rubles;
  • according to forecasts by EdTechXGlobal, the global market will grow by about 17% per year and by the year 2020 will reach 252 billion dollars.

At the moment the leader in online education is the United States and Canada. They occupy 50% of the total online education area.

Based on all of this information, it may be said that the world education area is the largest market in the world.


If we talk about traditional education, it definitely gives enough basic knowledge and theories but in fact the traditional form of education is becoming less popular for the new generation. Now is the time of “super technology”, when technologies act as the development of the modern generation. Most young people are keen on Internet resources where they can find interesting online education courses for themselves. After all, online education is not only popular but also convenient, since the student has the opportunity to choose an educational course, a suitable teacher and the time of the course. That is why I believe that online education is better and it will be more popular than the traditional form of education in a few years.

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