Are you taking an online course this summer like me? There are many advantages and good reasons for taking an online course. I am taking one from a local community college to lighten my course load during the fall semester. Others take online courses because you can attend school in your pajamas, it is less expensive and you have more freedom. But with lots of freedom, comes a lot of responsibility.
Here are some tips to succeed in your online course:
Write Down ALL the Due Dates
Depending on your course, you may have discussion board posts, papers to write, and quizzes/ exams to take. It is important to make sure that you know when each one is due. One suggestion I have is to print out your syllabus. When you have the physical copy in front of you, it is there for easy reference instead of having to scroll through pages of extra material. Highlight all the important information and dated then write down in a planner or input it into your phone. Whatever the case is, make sure you what is going on, because you do not have a professor in lecture reminding you what is due.
Set up a schedule for yourself
It is very easy to procrastinate and get lazy with a course if you do not have to get out of bed to learn. That is why it is important to prioritize your time. If possible, pick specific times during the week that you are going to set aside for your class. Pretend that you have an actual class that you have to go to, that way you will be able to stay on track.
Don’t Be Afraid to ask questions
One major difference between online classes and a lecture, is that with an online course, you will not have the chance to meet with your professor every week. Instead, you will be communicating through the online discussion boards and email. Just because you wont have the chance to talk to them, does not mean that the professor is not available to answer your questions about the course. Most of the time, they would love to talk to you and even have office hours if you are in the area.
Know your technology
Since you are taking an online course, it is extremely important to make sure you know your technology. Be familiar with your computer you are using (how much does the charge last?) and also how your computer connects to wi-fi. Professors will not take the excuse, “I have bad/ slow internet/”
Also, be aware of the platform your class is happening on. Take a tour and become familiar with all the different tabs and where you can find the resources and information.
Remember to Focus
Since there is no lecture for this class, the textbook and supplementary readings are the main source of information. Keep in mind that this information is good to know for tests, and online discussion. When it comes time for the quizzes, you are expected to have already known all the information so there may not be enough time to look every question up in the book. So when you are doing your readings, force your self to focus and avoid all distractions because the information you are reading will come in handy for tests and discussion posts.
Don't forget to keep these 5 tips in mind as you take an online college course! Good luck :)