Are you ready for your online class?

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Starting an online class? Follow these tips:

Change the way you look at online learning

Many see online learning as second only to in-person learning. They think that online learning is not effective.

Did you know that learning online can be more effective because it is self-directed? Students take charge of their own learning. You decide your schedule and goals. But you have to be committed and disciplined to gain rewards.

You will need:

  • to know your learning style
  • clear learning goals
  • self-motivation
  • discipline
  • focus
  • to be proactive

Synchronous or asynchronous learning?
Synchronous means that students and instructors participate in online activities at the same time. Asynchronous learning have activities that students can do anytime of the day. Some courses have both synchronous and asynchronous parts. Students attend scheduled online lectures. Afterwards, they can study, take tests or do learning activities at any time during the course.

Learn the technology

Know what you’ll need before your class starts:

  • Registration – Follow instructions to register. Go to the learning platform or website. Bookmark the website so you can go back to it easily.
  • Technical specifications – Follow the browser or internet bandwidth requirements. Get a headset and a microphone.
  • Other software or accounts needed – You may need an email address to register. Install software like Skype or Zoom to join synchronous classes.
  • Test your computer before the class starts.

Fix your study area and schedule

Be organized. Set up a quiet study area where you have privacy and good wi-fi signal. Follow a study schedule. This will help you become focused and productive. Be online 15 minutes early when attending a synchronous class. You will have time to fix any technical issues and become comfortable before it starts.

Good netiquette

  • Communicate respectfully. Talk to your teacher and classmates like in a face to face class. Greet them “Hello” or “Good morning” when you join. Always check your responses before sending a post or message.
  • Ask and answer. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Read the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) so you don’t ask them again. Share your knowledge with others when you see a question you can answer.
  • Don’t talk too much or go off-topic. Don’t interrupt someone when they are talking. You will have your turn to speak. Be calm and respectful when disagreeing.

Participate actively

  • Ask questions. Share your resources.
  • Contact your facilitator regularly to let them know how you are doing. Ask if you need help. Submit assignments or exams/quizzes on time.
  • Join the forum. Share your views, opinions or questions.
  • Connect with your classmates . Build a community by connecting with your classmates online. Connect via social media or meet in real life. Make friends, exchange resources and expand your network.
  • Blog. Write a blog about your course. Share what you learned with others.
  • Give feedback. This will help improve the course and benefit other learners.

Enjoy your online class!
Article updated July 13, 2021.

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