The Differences Between Formal Education and Non-Formal Education

Education is defined as the process by which individuals acquire learning, skills, knowledge, behaviors, values, moral beliefs, and attitudes. Education methods may include training, teaching, storytelling, group activities, and supervised research. The education system must provide an opportunity to explore and learn by the means of books, mass media, computer games, music, dances, sports, craft, and interaction with other human beings. Early childhood, elementary, middle, and high school education are prevalent in most of the countries. The education system should be capable of developing individual abilities through a holistic approach.


Education is a structured process that promotes the development of individuals’ thinking and learning ability through the participation of instructors and learners in an interactive process. An education program involves teaching and learning guided by specified objectives and instructional strategies. Instructional materials and tools are designed and taught in order to facilitate learning process. Formal education is a structured process of instruction and assessment through prescribed procedures by qualified educators who have attained a specialized level of education, including specific classroom procedures. The primary goal of formal education is to define and exercise control over students.

Informal education refers to non-formal programs and activities. Such programs are usually conducted by universities or colleges, as part of their efforts to improve education. Most informal courses are available for distance education purposes. Distance education programs often include lectures, discussions, case studies, demonstrations, hands-on activities, online college courses, and field trips.

Distance education can be of various types, such as face-to-face lectures and classroom-based programs, online college courses, and field trips. Most distance education programs are conducted on correspondence. Informal courses are mainly of two types, namely, face-to-face or distance learning programs. Both face-to-face and distance education are forms of higher education.

The advantages and disadvantages of formal and informal courses are obvious, but they must be examined when deciding whether to pursue higher education. A four-year university degree can equip you with an extensive range of career opportunities, depending on your chosen career path. You may gain a deep understanding of various subjects and enhance your ability to teach and learn. However, you may also spend much of your time performing administrative tasks, such as making financial records, filing school information, and tracking your progress.

With online higher education, you can study whenever and wherever you want. You can work and complete other responsibilities, while learning the skills you need to enter into the workforce. You can work on your own, without the hassle of commuting and without having to juggle work and family responsibilities. You can also complete your education at a time and manner that suits your personal needs. If you’re already employed, online programs allow you to take advantage of the flexible schedules offered by the online workforce, allowing you to complete your work in your free time.