It used to be that learners are compelled to go to school and attend instructor-led classes for a definite period of time to get a degree. But that is no longer the case because of advances in technology. That’s right, and in fact, there is a massive infiltration of online learning nowadays.
Earning a degree is now more flexible and convenient by taking online courses. This is typically carried out by attending in-person classes, learning online, or a combination of both. A plethora of advantages are brought about by these programs, especially if you have work, family and personal commitments to attend to as well. Online learning inculcates a balance between the different aspects of your life, and you don’t have to neglect any of them while pursuing your goals.
However, juggling online learning, family and work is also an art. You have to learn how to effectively do it so that you’ll become successful. The following are valuable tips for effective online learning:
Take your online course seriously- just like a real one.
You should muster the effort and discipline to tell yourself “I’ll work on this” pertaining to your online learning tasks. Your dedication to following through and actually accomplish your assignments is imperative. True, you have the flexibility when to get on with your online learning endeavors, but it doesn’t mean you should settle them at the last minute. Your e-learning undertaking should be a priority. Consider that you paid to take your online course, and just like a real one, you have to be present to get value out of your classes.
Be accountable for accomplishing your tasks and assignments.
The nature of online learning requires you to be accountable. There won’t be an instructor who will remind you of assignment due dates and deadlines, and that job is completely up to you. It’s best to establish your goals at the beginning of the semester and check on their status every week. Have your planner ready to organize your “stuff”, and be proactive when dealing with your activities. If you find this tricky, you can ask your spouse or friend to be an accountability partner. Don’t dawdle on this one, but always learn to be aware.
Manage your time wisely.
Time management is of the essence in this case. Literally considering that you have a “flexible” schedule when learning online can be detrimental. That is, it can render you feeling complacent. To ward this tendency off, you ought to set-up a daily and weekly schedule for tackling your online learning endeavor. Take a good look at the syllabus and note down assignments and when they are due. Stick to your schedule, and attend your online classes in the same way that you do with an actual classroom set-up. You are committed to being present, so don’t miss them.
Arrange a regular and organized study space.
This is necessary to create a conducive learning environment for yourself wherein you’ll establish a routine. It is important that you keep your motivation when studying online (on your own), and your study area is crucial when it comes to this. Look for an area that will boost your creativity, and it may vary whether in the library, the coffee shop, your kitchen table, your home office or your room. See to it that you have a reliable and high-speed Internet connection, too. Equipment such as your headphones, books, software and other materials should be handy.
Your sense of accountability and commitment should save your day when it relates to eliminating distractions when studying online. Remember that your tasks are important, and you have to be dedicated to completing them. Thus, you ought to do away with Netflix, social media or your cellphone when its study time. If you instinctively multi-task at home, why not study at the coffee shop or the library? You may have to download a website blocker to resist the urge to surf the web or check your email.
Determine your peak productivity.
How do you learn best? This is important in setting up your schedule and an effective routine. Are you a morning person? Then first thing in the day, studying should be what you’ll do. Otherwise, if you’re a night owl, you can set aside a couple of hours after dinner to do your tasks. Taking the kids to school in the morning? Then mid-day would be an apt time. People tend to have varied peak production periods, and you ought to get to know yours and optimize it so that you can produce quality output in your online learning.
Be an active participant.
You can do this in your online course forum board. Ask questions so that you can better understand the topics at hand. Commenting on your classmates’ papers is a good idea. Take time to read your professors’ and classmates’ notes and posts and say something if you need to for clarification. Check-in on these as often as you can- even on that spare 30 minutes before preparing dinner.
Optimize your networking possibilities.
Online learning doesn’t actually mean that you are on your own. As a matter of fact, many online programs include collaboration platforms with professors and instructors together with other learners. You can do this by actively participating in discussion boards- from introducing yourself to asking about your lessons and assignments. Build relationships with your peers, and you can even turn to them to form a virtual study group. You’ll never know- they might appreciate it as much as you do.
Online learning is indeed convenient, although oftentimes not easy. With the tips above, you can make the most of your study program and become successful in earning your degree and achieving your overall goals.
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