Impact of Online Education and Possible Legal Consequences

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Manuel Freire-Garabal y Núñez

By Prof. Sir Manuel Freire-Garabal y Núñez. Founder of Al-Khalifa Business School
Contributor of Online Education at Yale University 

As is known, the educational system of the future is online. In this era of technological innovation and digital and social revolution, the education sector has evolved into a completely groundbreaking situation.

This change is usually based on resistance, which causes remarkable changes in education based on acting as an effect of the rain on the firm rocks of History. Thus, only systemic changes can drive current teaching methodologies and the application of advanced technology in education, as is the case of Online Education.

Taking into account the challenges posed by disruption in the educational world, online learning is progressing enormously in the penetration of all the pillars of education, both in the field of corporate education and the different levels of education from the primary to the graduate.

It is necessary to clarify that, to the same extent the number of online users increases every day, the use of the internet and social platforms meet the needs of the individual even in the field of learning. This increase in users and their learning needs may be due to various reasons. A server believes that all this is more related to the need to prevail in an increasingly competitive world in which theoretical and face-to-face education is increasingly obsolete.

The rise of these educational trends is due to the fact that several studies about distance education have shown that online learning is better than in-person learning and, as a result, this widespread implementation of connected technology is observed in order to promote initiatives on learning.

In order to be disruptive and innovative it is necessary to start from two fundamental concepts in this educational modality.

On the one hand, the Personalization of learning based on educational innovation. It must be said that in order for a revolution in education to take place, changes that disturb the status quo must be instilled.

In this regard, students require more effective techniques that guarantee useful learning. Thus, it is required that each student learn differently. Therefore, the accumulate technique and the theoretical warehouse should not be followed, whereby the memorization of insured concepts is imposed through excessively objective examinations that prevent appreciating the qualities of each individual.

Thus, a greater number of students will thrive in practical conflict resolution environments, primarily in the field of business, from which they can learn and operate according to their own individual style.

On the other hand, it is necessary to focus on obtaining a work future. As is known, every individual who attends a higher degree, a medium degree or even a certification, does so in order to learn about the real work they will do after graduation.

 In this way, it is necessary to be intimately linked with the companies and organizations that will employ the students, since it will be a fact that benefits both the educational entity, the student and the company or agency. The case is to try to follow the philosophy of the Postgraduate Clubs of the universities of the IVY league, creating human networks that create both social and economic influence.

It is necessary to clarify in this regard that when engaging with corporations more deeply, associations can also lead to more personalized and targeted programs that address the highest priority needs for employers.

Once the multiple benefits of online education have been analyzed, it is necessary to use the possible legal controversies to which those who implement such programs through online platforms may be subjected.

Regarding the possible legal problems of online education, there are two: property and copyright along with data protection. Although they can also occur, and in fact have been denoted in face-to-face education, their controversy is greater in the online arena since the truthfulness of the facts can always be more easily verified, as they are transmitted in writing.

With regard to the right to property and the dissemination of content, it is common to use or dispose of materials subject to the copyrights of third parties that are disseminated and exploited by teachers and students in face-to-face universities. However, its use and provision are dispensed as long as it is done for educational purposes and as long as the original source is cited, it is what is called the demonstration of “fair use” before the Courts. If it is not carried out and that it also occurs for profit, the penalties that may derive from the action are extremely high.

Therefore, and in order to avoid convictions, it is advisable, in addition to using own materials, to make appropriate use of complementary sources.

It should be noted that, in most educational institutions - particularly in the United States -, they do not compensate those teachers who have been sued to infringe the copyrights of third parties.

With regard to data protection, what is required primarily is their overprotection in order to preserve the identity of the individual, in order to avoid problems of harassment and / or use of personal data for harmful purposes since the social, personal and economic point of view. That is why, together with the development of platforms that guarantee higher levels of protection, it is advisable to hire private insurance that guarantees coverage over any possible data breach that may occur.

In conclusion, the benefits derived from the advancement of online education through different platforms are extremely beneficial. However, a higher level of caution is recommended in regard to the legal problems outlined above, since the possibility of innocence in the face of negligence is hardly salvageable because the data is recorded at all times.

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