Saturday, 26 January 2013

Should you study online - or in a classroom?

Animation Apprentice - teaching animation online
Which is better? Studying online, or in a classroom? Until recently, almost everyone would have answered "in a classroom". But in recent years, as broadband has become cheaper and more universally available, and the cost of computer hardware has fallen, the possibilities for online study have grown. And, as tuition fees rise, so distance learning starts to look like a more affordable option.

Last year I founded Animation Apprentice , an online animation school designed specifically to teach the art of character and creature animation. It took 6 months to build the course, but now it almost runs itself, since most of the content is pre-recorded. Students gets bespoke feedback on their shots every week - which is the fun part of teaching, giving personal feedback and helping students to improve their work.

Here at Bucks we aim to combine the best aspects of distance learning with the best features of the traditional classroom model. Combining online content with classroom feedback is called blended learning, and the idea is that it offers the best of both worlds.

As the cost of higher education rises we think that blended learning will become an increasingly common way to get the very best out of higher education, using new technology to deliver education in a better, more efficient and more affordable way.


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