Skills for Success
Shasta College Online - Skills
Time Management and Planning
Time management may be one of the most important skills for online students to master. Online courses are not easier nor do they take less time than traditional classes. Make sure you set aside time for your courses. One advantage of online courses is the collaborative
environment that they enable. Students who complete their work
early will usually have the best chance of getting corrective feedback,
either from the instructor or from classmates depending upon the
activity. Postings made close to
the activity deadline usually leave very little opportunity for
constructive feedback and improvement prior to the deadline.
- Set aside specific times each day for studying.
- Mark due dates of assignments and exams in a calendar.
- Make a “to do” list of the items you have to complete each week.
Persistence and Motivation
As with any new challenge persistence is critical for success. Those who succeed are the ones who are willing to persist through both the academic and technical challenges of being an online student. Staying motivated can be a challenge for some online students. If you have trouble staying motivated or persisting, try the following tips.
- When you run into a challenge, don’t give up and ask for help if you need it.
- Reflect on your educational goals.
- Effective time management will help you avoid stressful challenges so follow the time management tips above.
Basic Technical skills
You may need to brush up on some basic technical skills before the class starts. If you do not have a lot of experience using computers for academic work such as writing papers, creating presentations, uploading attachments, try the following tips before you start your class.
- Search for and watch YouTube videos that show how to use software.
- Take software tutorials like the ones available through Microsoft Office Training.
Netiquete (Online Communication Skills)
Communicating online is difference than communicating face-to-face because many of the social cues are absent. Interaction provides several advantages to students. First, additional exposure to the material increases
retention, so the more you think about the course material the better you
will learn it and remember that material. Second, your classmates can offer
additional perspectives and suggestions that you may have never
- Being polite and respectful to your classmates and instructor is important for creating a positive and supportive learning environment.
- Using extra caution in the way things are worded online is important since many of the social cues of face-to-face communication are absent.
- Take the time to introduce yourself to your instructor. You should be able to
do this within the course space. A personal introduction will help distinguish
you from the other students in your course. At times students may make requests of
instructors (e.g., extensions, requests for additional information) and
instructors are much more inclined to be receptive towards students they know, rather than those that they do not.
Create Good Study Habits
Know what assignments are due before completing assigned reading. If you read and know the upcoming assignments before completing your assigned reading, you can
have the requirements for the assignment in mind while you are processing
the information. It is also import
to determine what criteria apply to the learning assessment, and use those
guidelines when completing activities. Some instructors provide evaluation criteria, such as rubrics, for their activities. These will usually provide
you some idea of the information instructors are looking for when they are
evaluating the activities.
- Find a quiet place where you can get your work done without distractions.
- Avoid the urge to start surfacing around the internet or using social networking site.
- Turn off your cell phone.
- Uninstall video games that may be too tempting for you.
Acknowledging when you need help is important for success.
- Don’t hesitate to contact your instructor if assignments seem unclear or you are having difficulty understanding something.
- Contact your counselor to discuss any challenges that are having a negative impact on your work.
- Look into the campus resources and assistance programs that are available.
- Use the technical support services if you are having trouble using Moodle.