Read Me First! Strategies for Online Students

Are you ready to succeed in your online course? If so, get started with these easy steps.

Step One: Read the syllabus. Print a copy on the first day of class, read through it twice. At the same time highlight, then record the due dates for assignments and threaded discussions in your personal calendar.

Step Two: Plan weekly study times. Studying, participating in forums and completing assignments in an online class can be challenging, even more so when juggling multiple responsibilities. Time management is vital for online students. Planning a regular study time, blocking off set times each week is what successful online students do most often.

Step Three: Make sure your computer works with Brightspace (D2L). If you need help with your personal computer, take it to Technology Services on the second floor of Andrews.

Step Four: Log onto the course a minimum of three times a week. Logging onto the course home page consistently each week is associated with higher grades for students according to several studies on online student behavior.

Step Five: Ask questions. Instructors want to help, they want students to be successful and expect students to ask questions. If you have a question about course content, need clarification on a difficult concept – ask.

Step Six: Make connections with fellow students. Connecting with online classmates and building a learning community is easier than you might think given all of the social tools and applications available today. Reach out to one student, send an email to ask a question, or create a Facebook group for your class.

Step Seven: Need help with D2L? During the week, go to the D2L Help Desk, located in the library, or submit a help desk ticket. At night or on the weekends, use the USG D2L Help Desk:

Finally, remember that the critical factor in online learning success is your role as the learner – the learning experience is what you make of it. Be an active participant, ask questions and enjoy the flexibility that learning provides.

Want to practice? Take a practice quiz in the D2L Student Training Course. You will be prompted to log in with your CCGA credentials. After logging on, simply go to Assignments, then Quizzes.

This post is a condensed version of an article that originally appeared in Online Learning Insights. Used with permission of the author.

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