What are Online Learning Tools? - Definition, Types & Examples

Instructor: Jennifer Moon
This lesson introduces the role of online learning tools in K-12 classroom environments. It defines the concept of online learning tools and then offers examples of types of tools that teachers can use to increase their student's ability to learn.

Why Use Online Learning Tools?

With the rapid increase of technology over the last 20+ years, the way students learn and teachers teach have changed too. Luckily, today a wealth of online tools can supplement your ability to bring new information to students, while providing students with many different options for learning input and output. You may be able to teach more effectively and your students may enjoy learning more using a variety of tools like these.

What are Online Learning Tools?

It's difficult to provide a single definition of online learning tools, because of the variety of tools. Think about online learning tools in this way: online learning tools refer to any program, app, or technology that can be accessed via an Internet connection and enhance a teacher's ability to present information and a student's ability to access that information.

Following are three major types of online learning tools: online classrooms, assistive technology, and apps.

Online Classrooms

Today's students are comfortable and familiar with using the Internet to gain information about unknown topics. In the past a person would have gone to the library and referred to an encyclopedia for information. Today we pull smartphones out of our pockets and ask Google to tell us all about any topic. It is for that reason many students wish to facilitate some of their own learning rather than coming to school and waiting to learn at a teacher-led pace. There are three main types of online classrooms that teachers need to be aware of to meet their students' learning needs.

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