Online colleges have a lot of benefits, particularly for non-traditional students and students who want to get their degree in a shorter amount of time. In fact, I have heard the argument made that online colleges will soon take over campuses and we will all attend class through the internet within twenty years.
Frankly, I believe that there are enough benefits to campuses that they will remain popular despite the growth of online colleges. First, despite the Internet's "old age" there are still a lot of flaws that remain to be fixed. It has a bad habit of shutting down at inopportune times. This could prevent students from attending class, or turning in their papers on time. And college libraries allow student access to a lot of resources not available online.
Also, some students learn best by attending class. It allows a structure that encourages them to be more productive and they learn best when they can see the professor lecture.
Finally, for many higher classes after undergrad classes, campus classes are a must. Take psychology or counseling: these require practical experience and would likely work best if they could talk to their professor one on one about it. And imagine if doctors went to medical school online. Its not possible. And if they took all of their undergrad classes online they might take longer to adjust.
What do you think? Do you take online classes? Do you have a preference? What are the pros and cons you have noticed?