Ash Catalan, Tera Braly

Students debate online, in-person driving school

February 4, 2020

Online is the better option than in-class

For many teenagers, earning a driver’s license is a milestone of maturity as they begin establishing independence from their parents. Driving is empowering for students because it gives them control of where they can be at whatever time they’d like.

Similarly, online driver’s education classes give students more control over their learning experience compared to in-person classes. These liberties include the ability to work at one’s own pace, to schedule the class around one own’s plans, and to be able to learn in the comfort of your own home.

The most upfront and clear difference between online and in-class drivers ed is the person teaching. In-class has a group of students being taught by a teacher so there will be a set schedule in which a student would have to follow. This would hinder any ability to make plans, so students would have to plan around the class. On the other hand, online gives a student the option to learn whenever and wherever they are. As long as they are in possession of a phone, tablet, computer, or anything that can access the Internet, they can read/listen to the lessons and take the quizzes. With that, the student can spend an afternoon with their friends and do the lessons later that night.

Being in a class has a certain atmosphere that would create stress. There’s a teacher going at the pace they deem necessary, which may be either too fast or slow for people. This could also create a sort of competitive environment for students that might turn students off. In an online class, a student will most likely be in their room alone reading the material with the occasional visit from their parents to assist them. A student can, therefore, listen to their music and get into the zone as they finish their lessons. There would be no teacher to pressure you or students to judge you.

Online classes also enable parents to be involved in the learning process in a closer way than in-person classes. And because parents have years of driving experience they can help you understand some of the concepts and reasons behind the laws while also refreshing their memory on certain driving laws. Most students would
be very comfortable and trusting of their parents, which is a better learning source compared to an unknown teacher.

The bottom line is that online classes offer more flexibility and independence as it makes a teen start the growing up process in their lifetimes as getting a drivers license is a major step, making it a better experience than in-person classes. They don’t have to follow a set schedule or keep up with the class’s pace or learn from a stranger.

With online classes, students can set their own schedule, which allows them to accommodate a busy schedule. There’s no pressure from a classroom atmosphere to keep up with the program’s pace, allowing the students to take their time to properly learn the material. Finally, the students will learn on their own with the assistance of their parents. In all, online is the drivers’ ed to take if a person wishes to get a license but do not want to have a class to add to the stress.

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In-Person drivers class is better

A significant milestone of adolescence is earning their driver’s permit. It’s a mark of independence and responsibility in a teenager’s life and proves they’re capable of safe driving. How can you ensure that you learn the most you can about road safety and driving laws? I strongly encourage that parents and their teenagers to consider attending an in-person driving school.

One of the best reasons to take driving school in a classroom environment is that a trained professional is teaching the course. The instructor has taught students for a long time, they know what works and what does not, and they probably have more knowledge about current driving laws than a parent.

Driving instructors are expected to be able to answer any road safety questions a kid may have. In most cases with online school, the parent will have to do some of the instructing in addition to the online content. Keep in mind it has probably been a while since your parents have had to pass a driving test, and they might not be in the loop on the new laws or remember what is logistically the best way to navigate an encounter that may have not been covered in the online course. I know I had a lot of questions about driving when I first started taking lessons, and my parents couldn’t answer every single one. I sometimes went to class with a question in mind, and my instructor was always able to provide an answer to my questions.

As much as we hate to admit, teenagers struggle with self-regulation. I know
for sure that I do. Teens are good about putting self-paced online classes off. I have friends who have taken months to complete the driver’s ed course online. Of course, everyone is different and some do have the means to complete the course in a timely manner. Online classes, also help students avoid information overload or the problem of going through the course so fast that you don’t retain information. A classroom where the course is paced in a way that you can truly retain and learn safety laws can be beneficial in a way you might not see.

I attempted to do online classes to accelerate my credits and found that I kept telling myself that I’d do that work tomorrow, or not put enough time aside to focus on my course.

An important portion of driving school is the behind-the-wheel part. I found it much more relaxing to drive with a professional instructor than my own parents. Obviously, I was more nervous, but the teacher knew better than to yell at some poor 15-year-old. Parents might be tempted to yell at their children if they make a mistake, show nervousness, or be confused as to how to teach their kids the mechanics of driving. is can lead to issues like parents refusing to drive with their child or the child being too frustrated to be behind the wheel with them. Overall,
I am glad I took the classroom route of driver’s ed. I found it suitable for the type of driver and person I am. I can also say my education was effective, as I have never gotten into a crash or a ticket. And I’ve never been that driver who other drivers turn their heads around to see the tool who just did a U-turn on the highway.

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