The widespread use of computers and the Internet has made distance learning easier and
faster, and now virtual schools and virtual universities provide full programs on the Internet.
The capacity of the Internet to support voice, video, text and immersion in teaching methods
made somewhat redundant previous various forms of telephone, video conferencing, radio,
television and education based on text. Nevertheless, many of the techniques developed
earlier and the lessons learned from media are used in the Internet delivery.
In 1996, Jones International University was started by Glenn Jones, CEO and Bernard Luskin,
Chancellor, as the first fully online university accredited by a regional accrediting association
in the United States.
Enrollment in dıstance learnıng centers was growing rapidly both in the developed and
developing countries in the period between 2000 and 2008. Many of the private, public, non-
profit and commercial institutions worldwide currently offer dıstance learnıng courses from
the most basic education to the highest levels of degree and doctoral programs. Levels of
accreditation vary: Widely respected universities such as Stanford University and Harvard
now deliver online courses, but other online schools get a little out of control, and some of
them are actually fraudulent, i.e. diploma mills. In the US, Distance Education and Training
Council (DETC) is specialized in accredited distance education institutions.
It was found that a third of all students enrolled in post-secondary education have taken
accredited online course in the post-school in the United States in 2011. Even if the growth
rate slow, registration for online courses is increasing with the advance in technology. Most
public and private colleges offer a full academic programs on the Internet. These include, but
are not limited with, programs in the field of mental health, occupational therapy, family
therapy, art therapy, physical therapy and rehabilitation.
Distance education has a long history, but its popularity and usage has grown as the advanced
technology has become more available. By 2008, online courses were available in the United
States in 44 states in the K-12 level.
Internet forums, online group discussions, and an online community of learning can
contribute to effective distance education experience. Studies show that socialization plays an
important role in some forms of distance education.