Distance learning is essentially an umbrella term for online courses, courses through the mail and/or coursework completed away from a traditional university. While some distance learning universities are connected to traditional universities, others are completely independent.
Nowadays most distance learning courses take place online, and typically involve a variety of different technological learning aids. While some online programs require students to attend seminars or physical classes, the majority only require students to attend online courses and complete assignments. Students learn through recorded lectures, powerpoints, videos, audios, uploaded reading materials, online conferences, and discussion boards.
Distance learning programs are perfect for students who need flexibility because of outside time commitments, such as families or jobs. With most online courses, students are able to complete work around their own schedules. However, because students have less guidance, this means that they need to be independent, disciplined and responsible.