Online and Hybrid Student Resources
Helpful Success Tips for Online Learners
Flexibility and convenience attract students to online education. Students find online education is as rigorous as face-to-face classes, but also comes with additional skills that may be more challenging to some students. As you embark on an online journey at TVCC, here are some tips to help you be a successful online learner.
Success is not the reflection of dreams alone, but the combination of dreams and hard work. When you enroll in class, you have chosen to begin your education; however, participating in your online classes requires you to get started and stay active when no one is watching or holding you to a schedule. When difficulties arise, do not become discouraged, but become persistent and take every action to move towards your goal. How?
- Write your educational goals down in a place you will frequently read.
- Work early and have a back-up plan.
- When faced with challenges, keep looking for answers and ask for help.
Participation in an online course involves asynchronous (recorded) and synchronous (live) interactions. If a challenge presents itself, be adaptable and think about how to resolve the issue. Communicate frequently with your class, and do not skip over content posted in your online course. Remember, if content is provided, it has a purpose. Additional tips:
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
- Prioritize your schoolwork.
- Take responsibility for your own learning by doing extra (re-reading, re-watching).
To be a self-directed learner you need to identify your study skills and time management skills. Staying organized and working ahead of schedule are important for online students, but most importantly avoid procrastination. Online students need to take initiatives to use student services for assistance. Enhancing your skills will improve your experience in an online class. How?
- Login to your course(s) every day and work.
- Ask questions early and often.
- Review the syllabus and set two schedules: long term and daily. Keep to them.
- Highlight your deadlines and work ahead.
What you put into your online course(s), is what you will receive. Be an active participant in your online course by collaborating and sharing with your classmates. Having an active online presence will help your class develop an online community to enrich discussions and sharing of ideas. How?
- Proactively contact your instructor for help. Don’t wait till you are too far behind in coursework.
- View the People in your course.
- Share with classmates the best method to contact you.
- Complete your Canvas profile.
- Start building your ePortfolio.
- Seek to do more than the bare minimum. For example, in discussion, you may only be expected to respond to one classmates. Instead, read and respond to 5 classmate’s posts.
The majority of communication in the online environment is written. Discussion, email, polls, etc. are frequently used as sources for communication. Your written communication should always be professional in grammar and tone. As a receiver of information, comprehension is valuable and skills to decipher meaning from text is important. How?
- Learn about Word formatting and editing.
- Use tools to correct grammar and punctuation.
- Contact your instructor via Phone to develop a plan for communication.
- Determine your Notification Settings to receive course updates.
- Review how to write a professional email.
Online courses are taken by accessing a computer. You should have a general knowledge of how to navigate your computer and the online environment. Your basic technology skills should include
- Sending and receiving emails
- Word formatting
- Posting and replying in discussion boards
- Saving and Sharing files
- Navigating Canvas: Student Orientation to Canvas
Since you are not going to be “seeing” your instructor or classmates routinely, you need to ensure you are comfortable in the alternative study environment. You should become accustomed to the communication and collaboration format. Remember netiquette is always expected in the online environment and upheld when participating in an online course. Furthermore, you should set yourself up in a location to access your online course to help you focus.
- Familiarize yourself with online study tools for note taking, saving important information, and creating folders/files.
- Review netiquette guidelines.
- Reserve a quiet space with limited distractions for studying.
- Unplug from distracting devices.
- Consider ergonomics (height of chair, wrist position for typing), seating, and lighting.