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Final Blog Post

In the short seven weeks of this course I have learned of many different online tools that I think will benefit me in the future. One being the site Quizlet, where you can test yourself over material you’re studying. Other online tools that I havent tried before this class such as mind maps, animations and info graphics will definitely be something I use as I continue my education.

What I have learned about myself is that I can sometimes be a procrastinator. I think the time tracker assignment helped me greatly with this though. It was helpful to see where I was spending my time working or studying and where it was being spent doing things that weren’t productive. Procrastinating is still something I need to work on but I feel this class and the time tracker assignment specifically has helped me take a step in the right direction of not procrastinating. I also think one of the the lads quizzes we took to see what kind of learner we are was very helpful. Seeing what type of learner I am will be beneficial in the future so I can make studying more effective.

I can also say that the time tracker assignment was the most meaningful experience in the class because again, I did learn a lot about how I spend my time. I also liked the time management assessments that we took and the beginning and end of the course because they allowed me to see how I progressed in managing my time after learning more in the class. One last assignment that I thought was meaningful was the module over web-enhanced listening & viewing strategies. This is particularly helpful when taking notes in a class and you need to get the information down quickly.

I will apply almost everything I’ve learned from this class in the future. Some things I knew about before the class and some I had never even heard of. A few specific things I can think of that I will apply is using Quizlet to study for classes. I will also continue to use google docs for group projects. One thing I had not thought to do before is use sites likeĀ www.doodle.com or www.whenisgood.net to find time for a group to meet and that is something I will definitely be using in the future. Also, the different note taking strategies were very interesting to me and they are something I would like to try and see what method works best for me.

Overall, I enjoyed this class and learned a lot. It was nice to have a break from learning about molecules and matrices and actually learning things that would be beneficial in the classes I was taking and in the future also. I think the class was set up very organized also and was very flexible when it came to finding a time to get the work done. This class has shown me the benefits of taking an online class as well. I think it is something I am comfortable enough with now and will probably be taking more online classes.

Searching & Researching

Good academic writing develops over time and there are a few things that make a good paper. You should first have good source credibility. The following are some things you should consider when deciding wether or not to use a source you have found online: author credentials, available contact info, up to date, consistent, well-written, if its biased and if its the appropriate audience. Since it is user-generated and editable, wikipedia is good to get basic information from but should not just be used as a reference, instead use primary or secondary sources. Wiki sources such as wikinews, wikiversity and wikibooks are generally not good to use for papers but more for studying.

There are three ways to search for information when researching, those are by keyword search, category search and metasearch. A way to refine your search results to more specific results is to search using more “and’s” between words or putting quotes around a set of words.

Once you have found your information for your paper or project, it is important that you know how to keep track of it. You can use sites such as purdue owl as a reference for citing your information and creating your reference list. You can also use bibliographic managers such as citeulike.org, easy bib.com and mendeley.com to help you with your bibliography.

Educational Video

Memorizing the Periodic Table

The point of this video is to show you that memorizing things doesn’t have to be so hard. By placing a visual image with a word, your mind recognizes the picture and the name of the object and it can recall what you are trying to remember.

This video helps me to memorize the material by placing it with a visual image. By creating a picture using words that sound like an element, when I see that object it makes me think of the element. This makes it memorizing a lot of words easier because you can just keep adding onto the image you’ve created. I think this great for visual learners and is a very affective way to memorize things.

Web-Enhanced Listening & Viewing Strategies

There are many good way to takes notes during your classes. If you have access to the notes before class, you should print them out and bring them to class so you can take more detailed notes. You can also keep the powerpoint as a file and type in the bottom section of the powerpoint. If your professor uses powerpoint but you don’t have access to it then you could break pieces of paper up and write down the main ideas or points of each slide. If you want to take notes from an online video you can copy and paste the link for later or make an outline of key points while you listen/watch. You can also takes notes using a template such as the Cornell Method where you can write down what your professor says and your own ideas/ thoughts.

Tools such as mind maps, wikis, One Note and lecture recordings can be very helpful when taking notes. Using online videos for learning can be very effective as it applies to visual and auditory learning preferences, presents the material in new ways and can be accessed at any time. Something like a podcast can be accessed through iTunes U and you can listen while doing other things.

Web-Enhanced Reading & Study Strategies

There are a few things you should do to make reading something online, more effective. You should scan through the text before and identify the main point of what you are reading. After you scan the text, try to choose a good pace to read at so that you understand what you read. As you read you should highlight/underline the main points and also ask yourself questions to help keep you engaged in the reading. It may also help to download the online text and print a paper copy to make it easier to underline/highlight things. Once you are done reading, try to summarize what you have read to make sure you understand the main points.

When it comes to using online study tools, getting creative is a good way to be an active learner. The act of actually making something you will use to learn, helps you learn it while you do it. Using tools like mind maps, timelines, animations, annotated presentations and info graphics is a good way to get creative in organizing your ideas. These study tools are good because they don’t just involve words but objects too. It forces you to focus on the main points and puts fewer constraints on creative thought processes.

Communicating and Collaborating

For those of you who have not taken on online class, there are a few things you should know to prepare yourself for when/if you do. First, you should take advantage of emailing instructors if you have questions about something. However, you should be mindful of how you say things and use proper etiquette when addressing a professor.

When and if you have a online group project, there are a few things you should do to be successful. You should get to know your group members and establish each others roles in the project. To help make communicating with the members of your group, you can use chat or a conference call. When it comes to finding a time to meet you can make things easier by using sites such as www.doodle.com or www.whenisgood.net to find a good time for everyone to meet.

When creating group projects you can use wikis where all groups can work on the same projects and add things such as photos, videos, link or additional pages. You can also use google docs to create documents, presentations and spreadsheets and you can access them from anywhere you have internet by logging into your gmail account. Both of these options make it easy for groups to work together and edit projects without physically being together.