Final Post

Hi guys! Well, we have reached the end of the semester and are ready to reflect over all of the important things we have learned from this course.

My “skills” at the beginning of this course consisted of writing down the assignments that I had due, and waiting until the last possible minute to start them. Now, I keep track of all of my assignments, prioritize them, and schedule times to work on them. Things have improved drastically! I’m not waiting until the day before to start a huge assignment anymore, I’ve been breaking them up into smaller chunks over multiple days. My time management and scheduling skills are insanely better now, and it has made me 100x less stressed!

One of the most important things I have learned in this course is how to schedule my time and stay organized. I am now obsessed with google calendar!! It is so easy to use and makes it so easy to keep track of school assignments, extracurriculars, and my personal life. I also have learned several very helpful ways to search for reliable, credible and relevant sources. This was especially helpful to me since I need to find specific, peer reviewed articles for every lab report I have to write. I found the tips about using wildcard (?) and truncation (*) symbols to expand my search work really well. For example, the wildcard symbol in b?ll finds ball, bill, bell, etc, and the truncating symbol in chemi* finds chemicals, chemist, chemistry, etc. That’s pretty cool, and I hope you found some of those helpful as well!

I’ve also learned a lot about myself. At the beginning of the semester I was so stressed out, not getting enough sleep, and just plain not taking care of myself. I really worked on my schedule to make sure I was getting everything I needed to get done finished and still be able to have time to ~relax~ which is important! I also learned that it’s never too late to change bad habits like procrastination.

The most meaningful experience in this course for me was probably writing these blogs! I’ve never had to write a blog or anything like this before and it was fun. It really gives you time to reflect on what you’ve learned or what’s important to you, and also share it in a fun and interesting way with others! I’ve really learned to be myself and have fun in my writing and communication with my peers online.

All of the things I’ve learned in this class will be able to not only be applied to my future classes and studying, but also my personal life! I will continue to use Google Calendar to keep track of everything going on and prioritize my tasks. I will be able to search the internet and get the results that will be the most helpful for me, and stop wasting my time looking through tons of sources that I wouldn’t be able to use!

My last piece of advice for you guys is to be yourself, work hard and take time to care for yourself too! Good luck with finals! 🙂

Searching and Researching – Module 6

Hi guys! This week’s module was really helpful for me and I hope you can get just as much out of it as I did. Everyone has to write papers, lab reports or find sources for their classes, and knowing how to search for credible and relevant information can be a struggle. I have some helpful tips to help you out for your next essay!

Source credibility is important when choosing sources, and there are three major components to think about. The first is reliability, is the source peer reviewed? Is the author’s contact information available? What’s the reputation of the publisher? The second is quality, is it up to date? Well written? Biased? The third is utility, does this relate to my topic? Appropriate audience? Enough detail? Thinking about these three things will help you find the best and most relevant sources to use for your writing.

When searching for sources there are three major ways most search engines search: keyword, category and metasearch. You can use search strategies, or boolean logic, to narrow down your results. One of the most useful tricks I learned was to use quotations around a certain phrase to get results that contain that exact phrase. i.e. “The Ohio State University”.

My favorite online search engine is Google Scholar. It is super easy to search and find credible, relevant, peer-reviewed information. What’s your favorite way to search? Let me know in the comments! I hope these tips help you for your next paper. Good luck! 🙂

Comprehending Online Content – Module 5

Reading notes and watching recorded lectures can be difficult for a lot of people… including me! If you struggle with listening or note-taking I’ve got some tips to help you out. Active listening is an important strategy when listening to any lecturer for any class. You should prepare to listen (what do you already know about the subject?),  focus on what they are saying, think about what they are saying, write down main ideas and key points in your own words, and actively respond to questions or show interest. First things first – if your professor supplies you with the notes or powerpoint ahead of time, take advantage and print them out and bring them with you! Even  if you’re watching a recorded lecture, you can take down notes to clarify or elaborate the slides. If you don’t have the slides, focus on what the lecturer says rather than copying down the slides word for word, and break your notes down into easier to understand sections. The note taking strategy I prefer is the Cornell, which consists of dividing your paper into sections so you can write down what your professor says and your own thoughts or questions. You can google a Cornell outline to use or look at examples and make your own.

A good tool to look at a course topic from a new perspective or learn about something new is with podcasts! Podcasts are like broadcasts, but available on demand and anyone can use it, so there are a wide variety of show subscriptions you can listen to. Just search for some online – it’s easy and most are free! Comment them below if you find any interesting or funny ones. Podcasts are just one way you can fill in any gaps or get supplemental help with troublesome course topics. The most useful thing I learned in this module that I think you should know too, was about how to take good notes. I am definitely prone to daydreaming and zoning out in class or watching online videos – so I am definitely going to put to use the tips about active listening and note taking! I normally try to copy slides down but now I’m going to be going to lecture more prepared and ready to focus on what my professors are actually saying. I hope these tips help you! Good luck 🙂

Two Sample t-test for Difference in Means Educational Video for Module 5


Two sample t test for difference of means by Khan Academy

In this video, a problem about Kaito growing tomatoes in two separate fields is introduced. Kaito wonders if the sizes of the tomato plants differ between the two fields so he took a random sample from each and showed the number, mean, and standard deviation for each. The problem wants to find out if there is actually a difference in the size of the tomato plants at a a=0.05 level of significance. In order to do this, a 2 sample t test is used. First, the null and alternate hypotheses are stated. Then, the t value is found to be -2.44 using the difference in means between fields A and B. A tcdf tool is then used to find the p value, but it must be multiplied by two since this is a two-tailed test, so p=0.024. Then, since p is less than a, we can reject the null hypothesis and suggest Ha.

I feel that this video enhances my learning on this topic because it’s easy to look at an example and not know exactly why a graph was drawn the way it was or how/where they got a certain number from, but this video does a very nice step by step example that explains everything! In my experience with statistics, t-tests are something that a lot of students need extra help with, especially two tailed. This video definitely supplements the information gone over in class, and provides an extra example that can be easily understood. In my opinion, the best thing about this video is they show how to draw the t-graph for a two-tailed test! Seeing them draw the graph and listening to the reasoning really drives the entire point of a two-tailed test home. An added bonus – this video can be replayed as many times as needed, or paused to follow along. This video is an important tool that can be used to supplement learning about two tailed t tests in statistics.

Module 4: Web-Enhanced Reading and Study Strategies

Hi guys! In my experience, a lot of classes (and not just online classes) use online textbooks. This is something I’ve personally struggled with a lot, but after this module the most useful tip I’ve learned is to just be an active reader and remove distractions. Before reading, look over the sections and determine how this fits into the goals from the syllabus. While reading, identify the most important main ideas and before moving on to a new section try to summarize what you just read. Ask questions!! Keep yourself engaged and interested, ask yourself ‘why does this matter?’ or ‘what does this relate to?’. After reading, keep records of your notes and stay organized. You can use creative study tools to run through the most important themes and study for upcoming exams. One of my favorite online study tools is quizlet. You can make flashcards, quizzes and diagrams and also look at sets other people have created. It’s really easy to use and you can keep track of every module or chapter by labeling them! Try it out next time and let me know how it goes. I know that reading online can seem challenging, but just take it one chapter at a time, and create those flashcards. It’ll make everything a lot easier when it comes time to review. Good luck!

Communicating and Collaborating Online – Module 3

Hi guys! Welcome to the first post on my blog. Why blog? I’m glad you asked –  blogs can be used to express thoughts and opinions, help people going through similar situations, connect with people like you, make a difference, and just to have fun and be creative. I hope you can all take away something useful from this post. Let’s get started!

I know how hard it is to communicate with your peers online when you cannot see them face to face. It can get stressful when you have a group project due but no one knows how to communicate about what needs to be accomplished. Do not worry! I have you covered. I am going to give you the best tips on how to build positive online relationships that will help you get those academic assignments completed in the most efficient manner. First, it’s important to make a good first impression by personalizing emails and taking a few extra minutes to spell check and grammar check everything related to coursework. You should also avoid writing in all capital letters and using sarcasm, since it’s hard to gauge tone through writing. You should provide your email, phone number, groupme or instant messager for them to contact you. The best tip I can give you is to “learn to put personality as well as your intentions into words in order to create a better and clearer relationship” (123). Compensate for not having nonverbal communications with happy emoticons and acronyms. Be patient while awaiting their reply. Ask specific questions about what should happen next and when you will communicate again. Before your next chat, prepare a list of questions to ask, turn off distractions, take notes, and stay focused on the topic.

Many online tools can help facilitate communicating and collaborating online. Use a shared google calendar to keep track of meeting dates and due dates. Use a group chat to communicate and assign group roles and tasks. Google docs are great for collaborating because everyone can see what everyone else is working on. Use separate folders and email accounts to stay organized with your online relationships. Add information regarding the name and file type for any files you attach to emails or discussion boards, and add a personal touch to every message.

An example from this module that I have already put into practice is to take a few extra minutes to proofread my emails and spellcheck and grammar check everything I turn in. It worked out well, since I caught a few sentences explaining something that didn’t make any sense in an email to my lab group about our assignment due next week. I was able to change some words around and now there won’t be any misunderstandings! The advice I have for other students based on what I’ve read is that it’s encouraged to let your personality show and have fun. You are going to get a lot more out of a class if you’re having fun engaging and learning from your peers. You can create positive online relationships in your classes and work together to apply learned information, teach each other and ask questions. The above tips will help you not only communicate and collaborate better with your online peers but will help you communicate more effectively in every other aspect of your life – which is important!

I hope you can use one of these strategies within the next couple of weeks to collaborate and communicate more effectively – comment below and let me know how it goes! 🙂