Is Distance Learning The New Normal?

Distance learning is the new normal way for students to gain different skills and knowledge that helps them be valuable candidates in the world of employment.

Yes, distance learning is the new normal. However, distance learning has been in existence for a long time. In South Africa, distance learning began in the year 1946. 

Most people have noticed distance learning ever since the country started experiencing the COVID-19 pandemic. Many things were shifted into online platforms, including education. This is how distance learning became the new normal in many lives of students. 

At Matric College, we offer courses through distance learning. This means that students learn while they are at home. Below is a list of the distance learning Programmes we offer: 

Each of the above programmes consists of different courses. These are both accredited and non-accredited courses. Each course is unique.

ICB Programme

This programme is designed by the ICB. It is also accredited by the ICB and the QCTO. The ICB courses in the ICB Programme offer scarce skills which are highly valued by employers. As a result, you gain a qualification that can get you hired.

Watch our CEO of Matric College, Jan Badenhorst, speak about the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB) and scarce skills

NATED Programme

This programme is designed by the DHET. It is also accredited by the DHET and the QCTO. The NATED courses in the NATED Programmes offer practical skills and knowledge which are essential for employment. You, therefore, gain a qualification that will enable you to find work easily.

NOTE: Our NATED Courses are offered at Matric College through a partnership with Bellview Institute of Distance Learning.

Matric Programme

This programme consists of courses that get you a Matric Certificate or a Matric Equivalent Certificate. The Matric Certificate is issued by Umalusi, while the Matric Equivalent Certificate is issued by FASSET. 

The Matric Certificate can be used to apply to university or find employment, while the Matric Equivalent Certificate can be used to open a business or find employment. Both certificates are accredited.

Short Course Programme

This programme is designed by the college. It is not accredited but offers essential skills. The Short Courses in the programme offer a set of skills that help you find employment or open a business.

These courses are good for skills improvement. They can be completed in a short period of time and when you complete them you earn a Certificate Qualification from us.

NOTE: Our Short Courses are provided in partnership with Skills Academy.

Which Course Is Best For Distance Learning?

All courses offered at Matric College are best for distance learning. This is why they are offered through distance learning. We allow our students to study at their pace. They are not rushed, to ensure they write their assessments from a point of understanding. 

For each course, there are tutors to assist so that students can understand their course best. This increases their chances to pass the course they are studying.

What Is Distance Learning, And How Does It Work?

Distance learning is education that is provided to students from far. This is where students learn from home and, sometimes, in a different country. 

Contact classes are not available in distance learning. There is very little or no online learning. However, students may use online resources while learning. At Matric College, we use online in the form: 

Distance learning works in this way: 

  • You receive study material from the college 
  • You receive a timetable for assessment submission 
  • You have access to tutors and course experts 
  • You study by yourself at your own time 
  • You ask questions through email, calls or WhatsApp when you feel stuck 
  • You can ask other students for assistance 
  • You study using your study guides 
  • You create notes from the study material and explanations from tutors 
  • You complete assessments and submit them in time 
  • You write exams online or at a physical location booked by the college 
  • You receive your Qualification from the college who gets it from the DHET or the ICB

What Do Online Students Need?

Students, who study through distance learning, need the following:

  • Study area 
  • Table and chair 
  • Stationery 
  • Notebook 
  • Timetable 
  • Smartphone 
  • Email address
  • Internet access 

Study Area

You must have a place where you study at. This helps you to be consistent in your studies. If you do not have a study place, you may waste time finding the right place, and this can be demotivating. 

Table And Chair

Have a table and a chair where you will sit comfortably. You will be able to put your books and stationery on the table and access it easily as you study. This way you will stay focused on your studies. 


This is important while you study. You will need pens, rulers and markers to make your notes look neat and interesting. This will help you easily trace different chapters when you study. 


A notebook is needed to write your notes. This includes summaries from your study material, information from the internet and your tutors. You will create notes that will help you study and find answers to your assessments. 


A timetable will help you stay consistent in your studying. It will work as a reminder that you need to study. 


You need a smartphone for when you communicate with tutors or submit assignments. A laptop is convenient, but a cellphone helps you do everything no matter where you are because you can carry it. 

Email Address

You need an email address that you will use to receive updates from the college, tutors or other students. You will also need to contact tutors and course experts when you cannot reach them on their phones. 

Internet Access

You need a reliable internet connection for when you submit assessments or do research. When you study from home, you do a lot of things using the internet.

What Are The Challenges In Doing Assessments In Distance Learning?

There are no challenges in doing your assessments through distance learning if you follow these easy steps: 

  • Make sure that you receive your study material from us 
  • Contact us if you have not received your study material 
  • Use your study material to study 
  • Ask questions before you answer any assessments 
  • Find clarity from your tutors and then answer your assessments 
  • Submit your assessments to the right place 
  • Ask questions whenever you feel confused

Completing assessments as a distance learning student is the same as other students. You have tutors who you can ask for help. They are available specifically to assist you.

Where Can I Study Distance Learning In South Africa?

You can study through distance learning at Matric College. Distance learning through us is convenient because of the following: 

  • Study at home 
  • Affordable 
  • Study at your own pace 
  • Work and study
  • Academic assistance
  • Study material
  • Gain transferable skills 
  • Earn a qualification

Study At Home

You get the opportunity to study at any place you prefer. The most comfortable is home, where you are free to study however you want. This reflects well on your studies because you can enjoy studying from home.


Not having to travel to class or buy food to eat after a class saves you a lot of money. This makes your study affordable and stress-free because you do not worry about not having a transport or lunch allowance.

Study At Your Own Pace

The way you study through us is flexible. You choose the pattern at which you want to study. This means you can study at night or during the day, however long you prefer. We do advise that you study daily, or at least four times a week.

Work And Study

You can study and work all at once because you can easily balance the two as our student. Study timetables are set y you and this is how you can be able to control your work and studies.

Academic Assistance

There is no need to feel overwhelmed because we have tutors to assist you. When you feel clueless, simply call, text or email our tutors, and they will assist you.

Study material

You do not pay extra funds for these textbooks. They are automatically covered in your course fees. We deliver them to you, and you can use them to study better.

Gain Transferable Skills

We know that skills are good for employment and entrepreneurship. This is why all our courses offer skills that help you when you look for work or open a business.

Earn A Qualification

When you complete any of our courses, you receive a qualification. We love to award you for your hard work. This is formally done through a graduation ceremony that you attend online from home.

Are There Positives To Distance Learning?

Yes, there are positive impacts that distance learning has on students, which are: 

  • They find out what their strengths and weaknesses are 
  • They learn to be responsible
  • They gain independence
  • They learn time management 
  • They spend more time with family 
  • They are safe from daily disasters that happen outside the house

Author: Mulisa Nethononda
Editor: Amy Venter
Date Published: May 26, 2022