Offline Vs Online Training

Offline Vs Online Training

Professionals, who are thinking of learning or taking up an up-skilling course always get confused whether to choose an online or offline learning platform. In this article, I will share my personal experience on these platforms, both as a faculty and as a learner.

Offline training has been the dominating medium for a long time and for a good reason. But in recent years, online training has been gaining traction due to ample of new platforms and popularity of internet. In last 5 years, companies like Coursera, Udemy, YouTube, MIT open course, Stanford online etc has helped lakhs of professionals to learn top courses from world’s best faculties at a very low cost. You can learn anything, anywhere with the power of these video contents. So, what’s the future looks like? Will it be dominated by online sessions and will offline learning become thing of past? Spoiler alert! It’s not. Offline training will continue to dominate for at least 30 years, till we find an alternative to brick & mortar classroom experience.

Here are some of the advantages of both online and offline training that I have personally observed while giving training in data science courses in Bangalore to make you decide which learning medium suits you the most.

Advantages of Offline Training

  • It is an active learning method, where students can interact with faculty, thus the concentration level is very high.
  • Course completion rate is almost 75% as compared to 7% of online.
  • The faculty can pass on the passion and enthusiasm of a subject to students.
  • Faculty can easily judge the performance of each student during the class and can work on problem areas.
  • Students who are trained offline usually tend to perform better than online training, if the course content remains the same. One of the reasons is peer’s pressure and competition.
  • Relationship building with like minded people, who are also going to be in similar profession is a bonus.
  • Learning experience with peers rejuvenates your thoughts and memory
  • Limited students in each batch ensures individual attention

Disadvantages of Offline Training

  • Quality of content can change with every lecture
  • Expensive than online courses
  • Personalized learning is not possible
  • Time flexibility
  • Difficult to manage for job holders

Advantages of Online Training

  • Flexibility – You learn at your own speed
  • Faculties can even be from Ivy League colleges
  • Cheaper than offline
  • Personalization of course contents
  • Faculties can make more money by teaching more students at once
  • Location independent – Anyone can teach from anywhere
  • Class recordings are a treasure

Disadvantage of Online Training

  • Very low concentration level for students
  • Faculties struggle to understand the student’s learning behaviour
  • Difficult to follow the passion of the teacher
  • Very low course completion rate
  • Lack of competitive attitude makes the learning process slower

I started my data science career as an online student (of course there were not many training companies like Corpnce at that time : p) and my experience was, you need a lot of self-motivation and allegiance to complete the course when you know it’s on you to complete the course as there is no time bound. In a country like India most of our learning years have been spent in a classroom environment with faculties and peers present around us all the time. Its challenging to adopt to new standards of learning. The quality of learning also changes when you interact with peers and faculties and its visible. For Ex: knowledge of an AI engineer, who has completed course in Stanford is definitely more than a student who has opted for distant course. Though faculties remain the same, exams remain the same, research shows that without peers and time limits, your performance degrades. While taking online classes at Corpnce for data science courses in Bangalore I observed, was very low attention span of students. They get distracted more and that lead to unclear concepts and ultimately end up leaving the course. Even during Covid, students called us to take offline classes as they can understand things in a better way and most importantly, we observe their coding.

So, the concept of online training with today’s technology looks more like a money-making process than adding real value to the student. No doubt we will continue to love our faculty to stand in front of us and answer our doubts till the time we both are in a virtual classroom where we can see a virtual friend sitting next to us and asking, hey did you get that what he just said!!