Telecommunication technology has increased greatly in the past ten years causing a tremendous impact on higher education. "Personal computers and internet connections give residence easy access to literally thousands of distance learning opportunities." (Illinois Board of Education, 2001). It has caused change in both the learning needs and the way learning opportunities are delivered. Telecommunication technology transforms our needs for education and training. It also expands our capacity to respond to those needs. This technological advance has made distance learning possible. Enabling it to become one of the mainstream methods of instruction for educational institutions.
Distance learning is defined as: a separation of place and/or time between instructor and learner, among learners, and/or between learners and learning resources. This way of learning was originally used over twenty-five years ago to serve remote and isolated learners. Since it became popular in the late 1980s, it is now used to provide learning opportunities that are flexible and responsive to the learner's needs. It "is now a key component of our new learning society, in which learners must take increased responsibilities for control and direction of the learning process" (Adult Center of Education, 2003).
The many benefits of distance learning has made it become of the most advanced method in higher education. Some advantageous qualities include: working around a person's schedule, saving the person time, and allowing the person to take more classes (if they are in college). Also, distance learning .
allows an older employee to acquire new skills that may allow him or her to better their employment opportunity or skills that may be required for their company. Another advantageous quality would be that it helps develop the student's learning skills and the person "becomes more competitive either at their present work or when applying for another job" (Project Management- Planning and Implementing a new course).