Online Learning

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This Online Learning Student Success Skill focuses on success strategies for getting the most out of online learning, time management, communication, and technical aspects of online learning. Success in online courses means not only achieving the learning outcomes but also being engaged in the process. Online learning differs from taking classes through in-person instruction. Through this Skill, students are introduced to the topics that are important to their being successful as online learners. Learners are provided with readings on how to be a successful online learner as well as a self-assessment to examine their online learning readiness. This Skill is organized into four sections: Getting the Most Out of Online Learning, Time Management, Communication and Interaction, and Using Technology to Support Your Online Learning.

In the Getting the Most Out of Online Learning section, learners are given practical suggestions on prepare for and get the most benefit from their online learning. Topics in this section include setting goals with deadlines, setting up a productive learning environment, and preparing to engage in various forms of instruction.

In the Time Management section, learners are provided guidelines on how to manage their time well, since in an online course they have more flexibility and are responsible for their time management. The topics in this section focus on devoting regular hours for the online class, staying on task and avoiding distractions while studying, and completing course activities and assignments on time.

In the Communication and Interaction section, learners are offered recommendations on how to communicate and interact effectively. Communicating online is different from communicating in person and it is essential for online learners to learn the various ways of communicating during the online course. Topics in this section comprise communicating with the instructor, communicating with peers, and interacting with content.

Finally, in the Using Technology to Support Your Online Learning section, learners are given guidelines on being prepared with the technical knowledge and skills. In the online environment, learners rely heavily on the use of technology for their learning. Topics in this section include becoming familiar with online learning technologies, navigating learning management systems, and accessing support services.

A picture shows a laptop, two pens, empty notes, and headphones.

Source: Photo by Maya Maceka on Unsplash.

Suggested Readings
Martin, F., Stamper, B., and Flowers, C. (2020). Examining student perception of readiness for online learning: Importance and confidence. Online Learning, 24(2), 3858.
Yukselturk, E., & Bulut, S. (2007). Predictors for student success in an online course. Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 10(2), 7183.
Scheiderer, J. (2021). 5 online learning tips for student success.