Article - The History of Online Education:

In America, child education is mandatory and now there are a variety of ways a parent can ensure that happens. While there was a time when one-room school houses were the norm, as the nation's population grew so did the sizes and options surround institutions of learning. Now, in addition to brick and mortar schools there are additional options; online eduction is the most popular choice as the process allows those in need to earn high school diplomas, college degrees and even graduate degrees all from the comfort of their own home thanks to flexible class schedules.

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Virtual learning is not a new creation, there are centuries of documentation regarding correspondence classes by mail, televised classes and showing a multitude of steps leading to the current way of doing things. The first type of computer assisted online education has a history dating back to the 1980s, when companies and organizations started to incorporate computers into their arsenal of business tools. After the advent of the World Wide Web in 1991 and the subsequent technology boom, online education became big business.

The very first online course can be linked to the School of Management and Strategic Studies at the Western Behavioral Sciences Institute in La Jolla, California. The university which launched that service in 1981. During the entire decade, there were additional online education advancements occurring in England and in regards the actual technology to be used.

1989 marked the year that launched online education and the ability to earn diplomas and degrees without attending classes in the flesh. Aside from multiple platform developments that made virtual classes possible, Phoenix University became the very first online university that would allow students to confer master's degrees and bachelor's degrees using computer based technology. The school was based in San Francisco, California and was the brain child of Dr. John Sperling and Terri Hedegaard Bishop.

In less than twenty-five years, the opportunities for online have grown beyond comprehension. Now community colleges boost an average of 64 percent of full time staff offering online educational classes and an overall increase of 150 percent in regards to students opting to take online courses as part of their curriculum from 1998 and 2008. Those numbers are poised to grown in the future as more American's prepare to transition into the new economy based on technology.

As America gears up for its' next evolution, more individuals are reevaluating the existing college degrees they may hold and pondering what educational precautions they can take to ensure they are employable in the future. While some folks may need to work towards a new degree certificate, other individuals may find that their education is no longer up to snuff and may need to rely on online education opportunities to incorporate the process into their already busy lifestyles.

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