There are various sources of education nowadays, and the internet has become one of the most prominent and widely visited destinations amongst all of them. A common and famous online university which offers free Islamic Education online is the Islamic Online University. A prominent aspect to be noted here is that this major shift of seeking Islamic education has changed drastically within a decade, this because by analyzing the situation about 2 decades ago students of knowledge and scholars have to learn hard through several books which could easily be done simply by our finger tips in a matter of minutes nowadays! In spite of these technological advancements and the benefits it has given, it also has its own disadvantages as well.
The major aspect which every student of knowledge has to understand when preparing to learn Islam online is, self discipline. Unlike the typical studying environment the computer is filled with distractions, ranging from computer games, to internet addiction and social networking. As a result he/she should understand and take measures to ensure this his heart is pure at all times in order to have a pure intention that is essential to maintain self discipline. Due to this, each student of knowledge should try to understand whether he could undertake this education online or whether it would not be possible due to lack of self discipline, in which case he should join an ordinary institute that offers such courses.
Another benefit that every student of knowledge has to take into consideration is that the seeking of Islamic education is actually a means of getting a better place in Paradise, and not merely a goal which one desires to achieve in this life. It should also be understood that knowledge is not like a capsule that can be swallowed at once, but it should be gradually learned in stages/parts in order to obtain the full benefit of that knowledge. It is due to this reason that righteous and learned people in the past spent their entire lives in this world, to seek knowledge, and as I recall one of the great Imams traveled several hundred miles in order to note down one hadith from a man in another city! This may should silly, but it shows the dedication and the thirst for gaining knowledge which should be present in every student of knowledge even today, but unfortunately its not. This is another reason why people must consider before trying to learn Islam online, because when they are not accountable to anybody there is less tendency for them to be patient as a result they could easily get distracted and gradually stop the course all together!
Yet another important aspect to be noted with relation to learning Islam online, is that the student of knowledge must always consider about the right aqeedah of the particular online university or other institution offering such courses. The inability to do so could lead to gaining a wrong understanding about Islam from the people. This is also not an easy task because, nowadays there are people who claim to be from Ahlus Sunnah wal Jamaah, but in reality they follow many Sufi and even Shirk related activities. The Islamic Online University is therefore the best place presently to learn Islam online, as it offers free diploma courses on various topics, and it also has a tuition free B.A. in Islamic Studies degree programme as well.