Online Learning: My Experience

Online learning has many unique features over other traditional forms of learning such as classrooms and lecture halls. To begin, one of the biggest advantages of online learning is the ability to pace yourself, in most instances. Usually, the pace of a class can make or break your grade for the semester. All students have different learning methods. Some are auditory learners and can easily pick up all the information the professor lectures on, while some are visual learners and need time to read the textbook and analyze diagrams before fully understanding the material. Therefore, in traditional settings, it is very easy for some students to get left behind. Secondly, online learning has the advantage of time management and scheduling. Because there usually is no set date or time allotted for class, students can get work done whenever they are able to as long as it is before the due date.

However, online learning does not come without challenges. The number one challenge I faced in past online learning experiences was meeting due dates. Online learning is very flexible and if you do not manage your time wisely, assignments and due dates can pile up quickly. Luckily, there are many tools available to students to avoid many of the problems that can accompany online learning such, making use of a calendar app, canvas assignment notifications, and even more generally, tools such as the online writing center and tutoring centers around campus.

Through my experience, I’ve determined that the main elements that will determine my success in online learning are adequate class participation, time management, and the discipline to complete all assignments as soon as possible.

Online Learning: Motivation & Goals

Staying motivated in college has been my number one challenge. It has been the one thing that has put me between mastering material in a course and falling behind. Luckily, I’ve found way to stay motivated and avoid burnout through a long semester. The thing I found most helpful was setting long term goals for each semester, and, more importantly, short-term, daily and weekly goals. Long-term goals can seem daunting and intimidating for most people, however, once you delegate the tasks needed to reach them to daily and weekly routines, it is doable, and it is what I found most helpful during my time as a college student. This is especially important in online learning because tasks can easily slip away if you are not on top of the online assignments.

Online Learning: Time & Task Management

The biggest challenge I forsee in my near future in both online learning and as a future professional is finding a balance between the different competing priorities in my life and dedicating adequate time to each in order to reach my goals. Fortunately, as a college student, I have the opportunity to develop long lasting habits to build good time management skills while not having the burden of raising a family, paying bills, working towards building a career, and other challenges that come with being a professional.

There are a few things I’ve found helpful during my time in college. One, setting a daily routine and sticking to it. In my experience it takes about three weeks for a routine to develop into a habit. Secondly, keeping a daily calendar which includes the tasks that need to be completeted every day of the week. And finally, taking advantage of organizational apps to organize tasks and assignments by their due dates and priority level such as Trello.