As its very name implies, Distance Education is the education acquired through being at distance from the teachers or education institutions. Distance education encompasses both online education and correspondence education, and therefore, it is sometimes, also known as online education or learning, e-learning, web-based learning, home study course, or correspondence course. Internet has been helping immensely in acquiring distance education from any or more colleges and universities of all over the world, at the same time, if one likes. Various sophisticated electronic devices, essentially including audio and video instruments, computers, PCs, printers, CD-ROM, etc., have been the elegant means of distance education from anywhere in the world readily.
Distance education has emerged as a potential alternative to on-campus education or learning throughout the whole world, and is becoming widely prominent and increasingly popular, and reliable, day by day.
Distance Education in India
Distance Education in India is gaining importance, momentum, and reputation fast, and the number of colleges and universities providing distance education is going on increasing day by day. In India, the Distance Education Council (DEC) of India supremely controls and regulates the standards of all educational activities of all Open and Distance Learning Institutes (ODLIs) and Open Universities of India providing distance education and online distance education courses.
Benefits of distance education in India
There are a number of outstanding and exclusive benefits of distance education provided by numerous colleges and universities of India. First of all, the diverse distance education courses or programs enable working students and professionals of various fields to acquire desired essential or additional qualifications easily, leisurely, and conveniently. Secondly, a rather extensive variety of distance education courses (pertaining to almost all fields of growing importance) are today being offered by numerous Indian and International colleges and universities of the world over. Moreover, a wide hierarchy of qualifications is available for undergraduates, graduates, post-graduates, professionals, and scholars, in the categories of online Diploma courses, online Degree courses, online Master Degree courses, online Certification courses, online PG courses, online PG Diploma courses, and Doctoral courses. Lastly, most of these online distance education programs offer amazing flexibility in respect of admission, selection of programs, duration of courses, age restrictions, education facilities, training techniques & procedures, and evaluation process.Top Distance Education Colleges and Universities
There is a large number of top distance education colleges and universities in India and abroad, providing distance education courses and programs various academic, technical, and professional fields. In India, about 15 open universities, and over 50 distance learning institutions provide distance education online and offline, through their over 300 courses and programs, pertaining to the mentioned fields. Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU)is the forerunner in this sector in India.