What is Synchronous Learning?
Synchronous learning is education that occurs in real time. This education happens at a single point in time, but not necessarily at the same location. It can consist of online learning where students learn and communicate in real time, but not face to face. The most common examples of online synchronous learning include streaming teleconferences, live chats, video conferences and interactive webinars.
Synchronous Learning in Education
Synchronous learning has become widespread in the educational world, especially since the COVID-19 pandemic. Like every educational method, synchronous learning has advantages and disadvantages:
Advantages of synchronous learning:
- Higher classroom engagement: Students are generally used to traditional learning, which is always synchronous. In online synchronous feedback is immediate, debate happens in real time and personal interaction is simpler, making it easier for students to engage in class.
- A dynamic learning experience: Concepts can be investigated in a more dynamic and detailed manner when communication is immediate.
- Deeper interaction with teachers: Teachers can give guidance and feedback in real time, and build a deeper relationship with their students.
Disadvantages of synchronous learning:
- Tech problems: Synchronous learning requires persistent internet access, which can cut out without warning or be so weak that information is not absorbed.
- Schedule inflexibility: Synchronous learning also required schedules to be synchronized. This can make it more challenging for students to balance school with work and/or free time.