Your professor, your computer, and you

Can students possibly learn more sitting alone, staring at a computer screen for hours on end than they could sitting amongst peers and interacting directly with an expert well versed in the subject at hand? Surprisingly, several studies, including one by the U.S. Department of Education, suggest that students are able to retain more and perform slightly better in an online setting than in a traditional one, according to U.S. News and World Report. Anthony Adornato, director of communications at Syracuse University’s Burton Blatt Institute, who has had experience as a traditional and online student, has been pleasantly surprised by his experiences learning online at the graduate level at the University of Missouri. “I have found the program, which is predominantly online, to be far more rewarding and fulfilling than I ever imagined,” he says. “Having said that, I think there is a big difference between getting a master’s degree online versus an undergraduate degree online. I don’t think there is anything that could replace the ‘traditional’ college experience.”

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