Why online classes are not effective?

Online classes and courses have become very popular in the recent past. This is not surprising considering the availability and access to online learning opportunities in both developed and developing countries. These courses and classes can be offered by universities (both big and small) and private companies; you only need a computer with Internet connection.

Also, these courses are available anytime allowing you to work on your own schedule. Many of them come with tutorials, video lectures, quizzes for self-assessment, weekly assignments and even exams (for long certifications). What’s more, they are very affordable compared to traditional institution-based courses or bootcamps.

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However, this “distance learning” is still controversial due lack of personal interaction between students and teachers as well as with others learners/students which reduces the motivation and commitment to finish the course successfully.

In that sense, a recent study by the Stanford Graduate School of Education suggests that students that engage more in these online classes tend to have more social interaction with other classmates and teachers compared to others who prefer traditional face-to-face classes. In addition, these online courses provide a wealth of information through resources shared by fellow students which can complement or even replace some lectures.

Why online classes are not effective?

The effectiveness of online classes have been challenged by various scholars but now there is a new study which have shown promising results. Here are the reasons why online classes are not effective:

  1. Competition – this is the biggest reason why online courses are not effective. Every student would have a lot of things to do and they can’t focus on their studies. This means that there’s no time for them to study what needs to be studied and many students find it hard and difficult. Moreover, most of these students don’t know how to use available technology like social media sites and internet surfing properly that they end up using it for useless purposes such as chatting with friends or playing games which wastes precious time.
  2. Overcrowded online learning solutions: Another thing about competition is that too many students enrolling in online courses which results to overcrowding classes. This makes some students think twice before joining an online course because the number of online students are increasing every day . It is very hard to feel comfortable being in a class with so many students inside the room. Online courses have different methods where it will run for one semester or two depending on the school’s policy. Most schools now prefer short-term online classes rather than long ones. This is because these schools realize that online classes are not effective because of overcrowding, tardiness, truancy, less involvement and participation of students.
  3. Inexperienced tutors: Another problem about online courses is their lack of teachers which makes most of them ineffective. A lot of schools don’t want to hire new teachers for online courses which make it difficult for students to be guided properly by someone who knows everything they need to learn. Most of these online courses are being handled by retirees or part-time professors which makes students lose their interest in the course.
  4. Lack of right technology: Some students do not have internet connection or laptops that they can’t take online courses. Many don’t want to enroll because they can’t afford to pay for internet connection, electricity bills and other miscellaneous fees every time there’s a class. This is one of the reasons why universities waste money on building new buildings instead of providing facilities like computers for everyone who wants to take an online course.
  5. They do not solve the issue of high cost of education: Most online courses especially graduate degrees are very expensive that many people don’t think it’s worth it at all. They say that paying huge amounts of money just to take an online course is a waste of time and a waste of money.
  6. Lack of proper regulation: Another problem about online courses is that these are not regulated by the government. This means that anyone can just open an online course anytime even if he/she does not possess any degree or certification which makes it very difficult to pass qualification exams for online course teachers.
  7. Lack of proper monitoring: Online courses are also ineffective because there’s no proper monitoring system in place. Every student who’s enrolled in an online course has to take many examinations after every class until the semester ends but there are students who find it hard to attend all these examinations especially those living outside their school’s vicinity. Examinations should be taken at least once or twice a month for this matter which is very hard to do if you are living outside your school. This has caused an increase in homework cheating websites. Read more about cheating in college.
  8. Inefficient communication channels: Lastly, the lack of communication makes online courses very ineffective because many students find it difficult to communicate with their professor, classmates or even friends outside their course. Well-disciplined communication is needed for every class in order to make everyone feel comfortable and involved which is not being done by most online courses.


There are many reasons why online courses are not effective but some reasons are more important than others. The lack of discipline among both professors and students is one of the major problems that need to be addressed carefully in order for everyone involved to have quality education. Online classes should start this coming semester so teachers can address these issues properly before it gets out of hand.

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What are your thoughts about the effectiveness of online classes? Do you think that online classes are effective or not?

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