By Jessie Bruner
We’ve all heard of online degrees: degrees earned by education-seeking students who just don’t have the means or the time to be on a college campus for their degree. It ranges from moms with kids at home, dads who never went to college, and hundreds of others looking to further their education find comfort and hope in online programs. But with all the recent developments in technology, people around the world, especially young people, are looking to the Internet for their education… in different ways.
“Learning is not a product of schooling but the lifelong attempt to acquire it.” A quote from the famous self-educator, Albert Einstein, embodies the educational movement that is now taking place on the Internet. After recently celebrating their 10 year anniversary (only 10 years? Feels like it’s been around forever!) YouTube has recently developed an education section for their website. (For more details on the section, check out their link here).
The site includes different sections of education such as business, foreign and native languages, social sciences, medicine, and much more. Students around the world are turning to YouTube and other social media sites to get educated on topics that they’re interested in, or even topics that they’re struggling with in school.
Another new section of YouTube called CrashCourse offers, well, a crash course in various topics: science, economics, astronomy, etc. Students of all ages can learn the basics of any topic and then go on to explore the details themselves. Famous author John Green, together with his brother Hank, has created CrashCourse as a way to encourage all students to further their education. As a result, the channel now has over 4 million subscribers and has reached over 300 million views. These numbers have earned the Green brothers funding from multiple government agencies.
The key to their success? Derek Muller, a well-known online educator, states in an interview with Forbes magazine: “Entertainment is the top priority to keep (viewers’) minds from wandering […] If you’re not getting people engaged, you’re not going to reach a big audience.” And entertain, they do!
Sites like YouTube and Khan Academy (see more details here) are storming the educational castle and are raking in the reviews. Viewers can watch and re-watch videos at their leisure and learn at their own pace. Everything from how to change your car’s oil, to calculus lessons, to learning Spanish is available at our fingertips – literally.
And although the technological devices at our disposal may never take the place of our beloved teachers, what is stopping us from using our resources? Having trouble with comma splices? There’s a video for that. Can’t seem to figure out your geometry homework? John Green can help you out with that.
Our education is in our hands and we must remember what Einstein said: “Learning is not a product of schooling but the lifelong attempt to acquire it.” So don’t let your education stop with high school, or even college. Take advantage of the resources provided and get educated.