A story about fake diplomas and fake universities is circulating the internet. This is a very troubling story. The Pakistani software company Exact has created hundreds of fake high schools and universities and sold fake degrees to thousands of people.
Many of these institutions have no accreditation or are in fact run by scammers. Some have even managed to sell fake certificates to students.
There is a lot to consider when evaluating online education. Studies show that students taking online courses tend to perform worse than their peers in traditional classroom settings.
It is not impossible to find an online course that offers quality teachers and student interaction. However, many colleges lack guidance on developing high quality online courses. Using artificial intelligence and personalizing instruction is a promising solution.
Taking an online course can be expensive. There are several reasons for this. Online courses require more reading and reference material, as well as a higher time commitment. They do not allow for commuting, and students have little control over class times.
The cost of taking an online course could be less than a face-to-face class. But there is a catch. Research has shown that virtual course takers have lower course grades and exam scores. Also, retaking the same class often requires a rescheduled date or time.
Despite all this, the benefits of taking an online course are not to be dismissed. Online learning can be a boon to working people, place bound individuals, and anyone who wishes to attend college but has other obligations. Taking an online course may open the door to a variety of careers.