When I worked in an office or on site, one of the bonuses was being able to work from home whenever possible. What freedom! No commuting, no struggling through the inclement weather, no excuses for being late. My commute at that time was up to five hours per day – so that time became work time. I got so much more done. You learned to manage disturbances at home but these could have occurred at work too. The only disadvantage to working from home was not attending meetings. Meetings were great for seeing people and interfacing with them to get the best possible working relationships.
Years later, here I am again, working from home (or hotel/work site/office). This time doing a Masters’ in Criminology at the University of Leicester. Again there are distinct advantages. No commute, no need to find accommodation near to a campus, no need to be physically present during lectures etc. To be fair, there are some disadvantages: not having direct access to the David Wilson Library unless I’m in Leicester. But you do have access to the online digital library. Furthermore, you can order online and collect books from your local academic library through the SCONUL scheme.
Advantages and disadvantages: can I get a coffee in the Students’ Union – no – but I can have one for free at home. Can I get a beer in ditto – no – but there is a bar nearby. Can I directly chat with fellow students – yes, online – but I do miss the face-to-face stuff.
So, working from home does have advantages. Many guys on my course work outside of the UK and so for them being distant from the campus is an actual advantage – they are either at work and being paid or filling their spare time. Distance Learning is just different learning.