6 Tips for Taking Classes Online: Secrets to Success

Young female student succeeds in her classes with these tips for taking classes online-scitexas.edu
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Even before COVID-19, colleges and higher education institutions worldwide were leveraging online learning platforms—or distance learning. And, before the Internet and Moodle, correspondence classes allowed working professionals to take courses from the comfort of their own home. Here, we will take a look at some tips for taking classes online.

For all their benefits, online classes also offer some unique challenges compared to traditional, in-person classes. Whether you’re seeking your first college degree or building on your education, educators at Southern Careers Institute in Texas put together these tips for succeeding in online college courses.

6 Tips for Taking Classes Online

  1. Treat Online Courses Like Any Other: Learn Your Syllabus 

This is one of the best tips for taking classes online. Stay organized by reviewing and mastering your syllabus. A successful online learner pays close attention to the course syllabus. This document is your best friend! It helps you understand when assignments are due and what material they cover. Add deadlines to your day planner. Review the instructions for any assignments before you begin working on them. And, consider any grading rubric before turning in a project. Checking off items from your syllabus will give you a sense of accomplishment. 

  1. Discover Your Learning Style

Psychologists still have much to discover about learning styles. There is some argument among them, whether there are four or eight or ten different learning styles. Setting aside those little details, it’s important to recognize people learn differently. You might be:

  • A visual learner, who learns best with graphs and pictures
  • A listener who understands from hearing stories
  • A writer who learns by transferring information
  • Or a “doer” who learns best with hands-on experience—and might prefer hybrid classes

Think about how you learn best—or how you most enjoy learning—and try to apply this recognion to your choice in online classes. Remember, participation is key! Most likely, your grade will include an evaluation of your participation level. And, you’ll enjoy online classes more when you’re involved.

  1. Manage Your Time Wisely

Learning online can be challenging when we’re faced with distractions at home. That’s why one of the handiest tips for taking online college classes is to budget your time. Some students like the Pomodoro technique—basically working for 25 minutes at a time and using a timer to plan regular breaks.

Start your day with a list of tasks, and work on them for 25 minutes at a time, then take a five or ten-minute break. Make every fourth break a longer one. 

  1. Eliminate Distractions and Manage Your Space for Online Learning

It also helps to set up a proper study space.

  • You won’t get much studying done while bingeing Netflix on the couch.
  • Create a formal schedule your family can respect, and make it obvious you’re studying by working at a desk or table. 

Whether you repurpose the dining room table every evening, or buy a desk, use the same space.

  1. Get Plenty of Rest Every Night

This is one of the most crucial tips for success in online college classes. Balancing online classes with a job and a family is a challenge, but you can do it! Our brains work best when we’re well-rested, so make it a habit to get plenty of sleep. The occasional late night of studying is fine, but you’ll discover learning is easier when you’re fresh.

  1. Communicate When You’re Struggling

Our best tip for online school success is to focus on communication. If you’re struggling with a concept in class, reach out to your professors for clarification, or bring it up in group discussions. There’s a good chance other students have the same question. 

The same applies to your home and work life. If you’re struggling with family life, call in some favors and ask for help.

Bonus Tip: Consider Hybrid Classes

Hybrid classes combine online learning with classroom time. If you’re struggling with online classes, you might prefer a hybrid situation.

With a plan for success and these tips for taking classes online, you will excel in Southern Career Institute’s online courses.

This article was published on: 01/20/21 12:01 PM

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.

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