Going to school is a challenge, no matter what age. But, with work and family suddenly it becomes a juggling act. Online learning has certainly helped contribute more into the life of the working student, but in some ways it adds to the challenge because in addition to going back to school you are learning in a completely new environment. Here are some tips we think will help you make the most of your online learning experience.
- Stay Proactive. Participate in the course. Contribute your ideas, and read about those of your peers. Your instructor is not the only source of information in your courses- you can gain great insight from your classmates and they can learn from you as well.
- Have a good space for studying. Make sure you have a private space where you can study. This means that you have a physical space where you can concentrate, leave papers everywhere and work in peace.
- Seek out Support. Before you start on your online journey, elicit the support of your colleagues, supervisor, family and friends. Having such a network of support will help you tremendously since there will be times when you will have to work on your course for hours at a stretch in the evenings and on weekends. It is helpful to surround yourself with people who understand and respect your goals and aspirations.
- Log on to your course everyday. If you let too many days go by without logging into the course, you will miss out on very important information or announcements.
- Be polite and respectful. Being polite and respectful is not only common sense, but also necessary for a dynamic and supportive online environment.
- Learn how to study. In online courses you have access to variety of resources from different mediums: print, videos, audios and the Internet. You are learning from the information provided on these mediums. Your job is not just listening and watching. You have to take notes, highlight key points, summarize and prepare study guides for yourself.
- Take advantage of online office hours. It is crucial to avoid feeling isolated in an online environment. Participating in virtual office hours will provide you the opportunity to interact with your instructor as well as other students.
- Seek help. Ask for help when you have questions about course content material, cannot watch a video, unable to access homework, or not able to locate an assignment in the course. Your instructors are available by email, phone, or virtual office hours.
- Start a study group. Study groups are effective in a sense that they help everyone on the team to have a deeper learning and higher grades. You can start a study group with some of your classmates.
Are you ready for taking online classes? Take this quiz to find out.