Classroom or Beach? Best Study Locations Identified

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Research conducted as part of Home Learning College's 'Welcome Back to Learning' campaign shows that adult learners across the country have resolutely turned their back on the classroom, preferring to study at home or even on the beach.

Only 4 per cent of adults believe classrooms are the most productive environment in which to learn.

Adult learners across the country have resolutely turned their back on the classroom, according to research released today by distance learning specialist Home Learning College. The survey found almost half of Brits (45 per cent) prefer to study at home than in a formal learning environment. The beach, the park and coffee shops were also mentioned as favoured study locations.

The research was conducted as part of Home Learning College’s ‘Welcome Back to Learning’ campaign, which highlights the positive impact of further study on career success and fulfilment. With the new academic year about to start, the survey asked participants to identify their preferred study setting.

The findings show that only 4 per cent believe classrooms are the most productive environment in which to learn. Those fresh out of school were most likely to select this option, with 6 per cent of 18 to 24 year olds opting for classroom study compared to just 1 per cent in the 45 to 54 age bracket.

The second most popular choice was the beach - with 12 per cent of the vote - despite the obvious potential for numerous distractions. Unexpectedly, residents of the Midlands were most likely to state this as their ideal study location, even though the region is miles from the coast.

Studying in bed also proved highly desirable for 11 per cent of respondents. This rose to 13 per cent among female students for whom it was the second most common choice, compared to just 8 per cent of men. Public libraries scraped into fourth place with 9 per cent of the vote and coffee shops completed the top five with 7 per cent.

Preferred study locations:
At a desk in a quiet room at home = 45%
On the beach =     12%
In bed = 11%
In a public library = 9%
At a coffee shop = 7%
In the park    = 6%
In a classroom = 4%

“One of the benefits of learning as an adult is having greater control over where and when you study. This is particularly true for distance learning where there is no element of classroom teaching,” remarks Dave Snow, Academic Director at Home Learning College. “If decamping to the beach, park or a coffee shop makes it easier to understand and retain information then why not enjoy that freedom. However, while these locations may seem desirable, you might find that in reality there’s no substitute for a quiet, comfortable spot at home.”

For information on Home Learning College’s range of accredited distance learning courses visit

About Home Learning College

Home Learning College is the largest vocational distance learning provider in the UK, and is accredited by the National Union of Students (NUS), allowing its 55,000 students to enjoy the discounts and services available with the NUS Extra Card.

All Home Learning College courses lead to professional CV-enhancing, employer recognised qualifications, including AAT, Sage, CompTIA, Microsoft, ICB and CIW. Subjects covered include book-keeping, accounting, IT and computing, web design and many more.

Home Learning College students benefit from a dedicated in-house tutoring service and the Virtual Learning Community - an online learning environment which facilitates the delivery of course material and peer networking.

For more information on all courses visit Home Learning College, follow us on Twitter @home_learning or check out student testimonials and other video content on our YouTube channel:

Tor Goldfield
Home Learning College Communications Manager
Tel: 020 8676 6258
Mobile: 07843 335606
Email: tor.goldfield(at)homelearningcollege(dot)com


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Tor Goldfield