Students who think that online tutoring with a tutor in Australia (Sydney, Melbourne, or any location) for help and support with their English, maths, French, or any other subjects is not as effective as private in-person tutoring or at school learning are surprisingly common.
Don't be fooled though - reviews of education in recent years have shown that this development in school and university learning will be one of the top ways students can get cluey and boost their skills in this day and age.
Not only has the pandemic pushed many a lesson online, but it has also made us realise the high potential we can have, even using free time and free software, to support and communicate across Melbourne, VIC, Sydney, NSW, Australia, and the world when it comes to working and learning together and sharing skills and knowledge.
Just think about how you got access to contact with parents and grandparents when you couldn't leave the house - online chatting!
The impact for teachers and students at school and university for all students of any school year or subjects - French, English, maths etc - has been very high of covid as well, but we have been able to surprise ourselves, whether parents, teachers, young children, or older students with how we can make the most lesson after lesson of online education and even jobs.
Superprof is one such platform to come out of the online education revolution. Given that you will be free to explore online tutoring all over Sydney NSW, Melbourne VIC, Australia, or even abroad, we aim to help students get in touch with the right tutor for private online or private in-person sessions to boost their education.
The tutoring platform is entirely online, so even if students and tutors want to meet in person in the end, we rely heavily on the online component.
Therefore, whether you want to get info on scoring a high ATAR in HSC or want lessons in French, maths, or English for your child, or are even parents who want to go back to university yourselves, Superprof is a top authority to help you boost your academic skills.
Distance Learning: A Timeline
Whilst online tutoring has developed year after year in our life time, it will come as no surprise that online learning with a private teacher or tutor is a very 21st century development.
The distance learning phenomenon surprisingly started in the 18th century though. Tuition had obviously already existed for a long time, since around the year 2000 BC but the innovation of Sir Isaac Pittman to help students to learn from the skills and knowledge of tutors with remote lessons was a roaring success from the very beginning.
His method was so successful since feedback and collaboration went both ways, helping students to conduct reviews of their own work and learn from their own academic methods to solve problems. This success then led to the establishment of the Phonographic Correspondence Society which empowered learning all of the UK, with students being able to correspond with a tutor or teacher in a range of subjects all across the country in a range of subjects.
This then took off overseas, with the USA seeing a similar phenomenon through various channels. The real appeal was that those with free time could spend it learning, including wealthy housewives, which led to a broader view of education.
Once this became successful enough, the prices of such programs were driven down and those from lower socioeconomic and isolated backgrounds could find time and gain access to education between working hours to follow more academic pursuits.
Whilst it took more development year upon year to bring this into the mainstream, cluey children and older students were still able to get the idea that learning didn't have to be face to face with a teacher at school or university or with sessions with a private tutor.
In Australia, would it surprise you to learn that online learning is taking off here?
Distance Education Today
There are many reasons why distance education could not take off fully in the past, including work, financial, class, gender, race, or geographical limitations.
Moreover, the tenets of distance education would have focussed primarily on more core subjects like English, maths, science, and perhaps for the more upper class, French or philosophy or Latin.
Thus, as education became a universal human right, education support also became big business since there were all kinds of new pupils who needed to understand learning when they may not have considered it before.
This combined with the communications boom with the telegraph, telephone, cinema, and television at the beginning of the 20th century, thus leading to mass learning by many pupils in remote locations who could follow the same course. This was particularly beneficial for those who never finished their formal education or who wanted to come back later.
This also changed the capacity of the tutor since they were then required to reassess what they needed to move for and what they could do from an office.
Needless to say, these communications developments were a few steps before the internet and online tuition, but you see what we're getting at!
The attitude towards when, where, and how we learn changed, and this shift in mentality is exactly what remote learning provides.
The Importance of Tutors in Virtual Learning
Anyone who is currently or has been in school or university in the last 10 years will have heard about a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). This keeps learning resources and materials central, and means that school or university students can complement their own independent training and subject reviews.
Given our current enforcement of education, it might come as a surprise to discover then that compulsory education wasn't actually enforced until the 17th century. What changed this was partly thanks to the advances of the enlightenment, which put science and rationality in the minds of the populace but also saw new technology enhance educational means.
Now while this may sound contrary to the history of distance learning, having a dedicated instructor in front of a class to explain and correct became a mainstay of education, and the same idea permeated into tutoring.
Thus, as we were able to become more independent and remote learners with time and technology, the necessity of having a source of knowledge and pedagogical wherewithal reinforced itself as a core element of learning, and is maintained today.
A tutor nowadays is seen as the person to keep the motivation of the student up and to explain concepts on a level that suits that particular pupil. The wide range of software and materials - VLEs, interactive whiteboards, Zoom - that are available mean that this can effectively be achieved without having to be in the same room, whilst still respecting the function of the teacher or private tutor.
For good measure, let's consider any potential downsides to online tutoring too.
A Testament to the Efficacy of Online Learning
Given that not all learners will function well in a traditional classroom setting with teachers and other students around, a tutor is a good way of addressing learning issues or poor attitudes towards education. A comfortable learning environment such as the home can also help this since a pupil is in familiar surroundings, and may be more receptive to flexible and experimental learning styles that a tutor can help with.
It also goes without saying that time constraints are less of an issue with online learning since you can engage with it on a more flexible timetable.
Consider some other advantages of online learning:
- the plethora of digital learning tools
- easy access and free learning materials
- graphics, videos, visuals etc to enhance education more broadly
- zero travel time
- enhanced security against covid
It's finally worth mentioning that people born after 1995 are all digital natives which means there is a natural ease of engaging with this type of education, which many educators have taken note of and adapted education and tuition to.
Online Learning: A Case Study
In a major US Department of Education study, it has been found that students who engage in combined online and in-person tuition fare better than those who only take face-to-face classes or tutoring sessions.
This hybrid approach to online and classroom instruction has been trialled at the University of Phoenix and students noted the perceived benefits as well as the concrete evidence taken from this trial.
People were reluctant to accept online education at the turn of the millennium, but as we have learned what possibilities lay inside a computer and the internet, we have come to show a broader acceptance of online learning. Society nevertheless wants to retain some of the personal elements.
The pros of online learning are helpful for understanding how this is being viewed more positively in Australia, but the desire to pursue hybrid learning seems to be the order of the day.
Historical evidence and several more recent studies point to this fact, but also highlight that ongoing online support from a tutor will continue to benefit pupils all over the country thanks to this digital age we live in, with a platform like Superprof becoming ever more indispensable.
The platform that connects tutors and students