See if online learning is a good match.
It is important for a student to understand what online learning is like so he or she knows what to expect. Knowing a student's learning style and habits helps to make sure online learning is a good match. In some cases, a student may need to change study habits or arrange extra support to help them be more successful.
The following qualities are good indicators of student success in online courses. Although the lack of one or two does not necessarily mean you won't succeed, you may want to talk with your guidance counselor about what support will help you be successful.
Indicators of Success
- Self-aware and informed. Understand what kind of learner you are and what online learning is like to make a good decision about your course. The content delivery is still largely text-based, so a social or hands-on learner will need to keep that in mind.
- Self-motivated. Able to set and reach goals on your own. Inquisitive and interested in taking the course online.
- Reading skills. Enjoy reading or are motivated to read on the given topic. Online students read lessons, read web resources for research, and read teacher responses.
- Writing skills. Enjoy writing or are motivated to write on the given topic. Writing is the basic means of completing online assignments and interacting with the teacher and other students.
- Independent learner. Able to read and follow directions without frequent teacher assistance. Realize that teacher response is timely, but not immediate.
- Organized. Able to plan, prioritize, and organize tasks and assignments. Able to set a schedule and meet deadlines.
- Problem solver. Do not give up easily in the face of a challenge. Resourceful and able to find solutions to questions on your own. Know when to seek help and do so.
- Active participant. Comfortable "sitting in the front row." Online learning is active and requires regular interaction with your teacher.
- Time availability. Able to participate in the course along with your other activities. Online courses require at least as much time as a regular classroom course if not more.
- Computer access and skills. Have access to a reliable computer with an internet connection. Possess basic computer skills to use email, navigate websites, and manage files.