Are You Ready for Online Learning?
How do you know if you are ready to learn online? Please read through the characteristics of successful online Truman students below to see if you might be a good fit for online learning at Truman.
A successful online Truman student…
- is self-motivated and self-disciplined. Although online courses offer you more freedom and flexibility, they also require you to be more personally responsible for your learning. It takes real commitment and dedication to your class to keep up with the work.
- is comfortable using technology. An online course requires you to be comfortable using a computer. You will need to know how to save and attach files, download files, use e-mail, search the Web, use multiple Internet browsers, and more. You must also be prepared for potential hardware or software problems you may have. A backup plan such as using a computer in your local library is essential should your computer become disabled.
- is comfortable using Blackboard. Blackboard is the course management system we use at Truman. If you have not used Blackboard in another course, you will want to view the Blackboard tutorials found on the Learning Technologies website.
- is willing to commit the time it takes to learn online. Online courses by their very nature require you to take charge of your own learning. This means that in many cases, you will need to spend more time studying since your instructor will not be “lecturing” in the traditional sense.
- can communicate effectively online. The written word can sometimes be challenging. Have you ever read an e-mail and taken the sender’s words out of context? To be successful in an online course, you will need to be careful and considerate in choosing your words when communicating with your instructor or other students in the virtual classroom.
- is willing to speak up when necessary. In a virtual classroom, the instructor can’t see when you are confused. If you are confused or unclear on an assignment or other activity, you probably are not alone. You will need to take the initiative to speak out and let your instructor know if you have any questions.
- is well-organized when it comes to homework. It’s often tempting to put off assignments until the last minute. If you’re a procrastinator, you already know that sometimes when you wait, things don’t always work out as planned. When working in a virtual classroom, it’s best to plan ahead and build in time for technology glitches. Don’t wait until the last minute, only to find that your assignment isn’t in the right format, or that you can’t access a quiz. Successful students prepare ahead and anticipate potential problems, thus avoiding the “my computer ate my homework” excuse.
Do you fit the bill? If you answered “yes” to all of these questions, then you are well on your way to a successful online learning experience! If not, you may want to meet with a mentor or advisor for direction in determining your next steps.