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Online Students

Strategies for Success in Online Learning

1. Confirm Technical Requirements & Skills
Before the course begins, make sure your computer meets the technical requirements to work with Blackboard. You’ll need basic computer skills to navigate Blackboard’s online tools. Spend some time getting familiar with the system as early as you can. Also, some instructors may require a headset with a microphone and webcam for group discussions or other assignments. Any special requirements will be listed in the course syllabus.

2. Create a Good Study Environment
It’s important to find a quiet place to work without distractions. If possible, let your family and friends know when it’s your time to study.

3. Be Open-Minded
Do not presume that online classes require less work and are easier than traditional, face-to-face classes. In reality, online classes are just as demanding and rigorous as traditional classes. Also, remember that the online learning is a different experience than a tradition classroom setting. Be prepared to communicate mostly through the written word through discussion board posts, writing assignments and email.

4. Master Effective Time-Management
Flexibility is one of the greatest benefits of online learning. However, it can also be a drawback for students who procrastinate or are unable to independently complete assignments without reminders. Success in online learning requires responsibility, discipline and commitment.
  • Review the syllabus and create a calendar for all assignments and deadlines.
  • Stay organized and establish priorities for reading, online discussions and assignments.
  • Log on to your course daily or several times a week to keep with communication from your instructor and discussions with your classmates.
  • Don’t procrastinate and work ahead when possible.
5. Communicate with your Instructor
Get to know your instructor early and don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you run into a problem, address it quickly and before the due date.

6. Participate in the Discussion
Even though you are not in a traditional classroom setting, you will still be expected to contribute your ideas, perspective and comments on the subject you are studying. You will also likely be required to read and respond to those of your classmates as well. Your can gain great insight from your fellow students and they can learn from you as well. For online discussions, remember to:
  • Think through your comments before responding
  • Use appropriate language with a respectful tone
  • Write in full, grammatically correct sentences