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What Is The Difference Between Distance Education and Online Learning?


Distance Education Degree

Distance education refers to ways in which education may be delivered to students in remote locations. It is designed to offer students who cannot commit to on-site study the opportunity to pursue education in non-traditional formats. Distance education may include online degree programs, correspondence courses, CD-ROM education and many others.

Before the advent of the personal computer (PC), students often completed courses by receiving and submitting coursework by way of the mail system. Because technology has advanced greatly in past decades, the variety of distance education methods has increased. Synchronous distance education occurs when all students must be present simultaneously on a scheduled basis. Education that may be completed on a student’s own schedule and does not involve a specific timetable is considered asynchronous, which is common for distance learning courses.

Online Learning

An online learning program is one option under the broader category of distance education. Students who own or have access to PCs can pursue an online degree by completing coursework via the Internet. Online courses give students the freedom to work from the comfort and convenience of their homes. Working professionals, who are unable to leave work in order to pursue full-time, on-campus study, benefit most from online courses of study.

Accredited online MBA programs are available in a variety of fields, including business administration and nursing. Students in these programs receive and submit coursework online and interact with fellow students and faculty by email or through other forms of electronic communication. In recent years, online degree programs have flourished and become recognized as legitimate options for completing your education.

So you can see that both online learning and distance learning require similar online learning tools, but there the similarity ends. Distance learning is more about the geography. Online learning is more about the method. Online learning is a key part of any blended learning classroom. And the blended learning classroom is an important part of engaging students. They will appreciated the opportunity to learn independently with online learning in addition to all the other wonderful tools you use in your classroom.


The difference between online learning and distance learning is that 0nline learning is not a replacement for a teacher, nor an online school or course. Rather, online learning is an important part of the successful modern classroom

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