Taking online classes, as in most or all of your classes in a distant learning program instead of living on campus, is not for everyone. However, it can be interesting and good alternative route to take if you can see yourself doing it . So here are tips that helps me when it comes to being a distant learning student.
1. Discipline and being extra focused is key. In distant learning programs, you constantly interact with other classmates , professors, and be apart of live web cam meetings/seminars. So, it’s not like I’m being totally socially deprived of that class room feel. However, it is easy to get side tracked and put other things before projects are due. So, taking online classes requires alot of focus and self discipline…..but being in a physical setting does as well.
2. I can be an home body, but it is healthier to take your laptop with you to different places like a park, the library, or a café and switch up your scenery at times. For an example, I have an annual membership with my city’s High musuem of a
Art and sometimes I go look at art and in the cafe I log into my classes when I want to take a break & eat, or I go to the public library and go to the archives/genealogy floor, but I’m an introvert so it’s also comfortable for me to just do my classes at home. This however, means it is important to exercise whether I’m at home or deciding to walk in a park. Just some fresh air and nature scenery. Bottom line, looking at a laptop ,sitting for extended periods of times can be unhealthy so take time to stretch everyday, move around, and be mobile with your laptop.
3. I’m not knocking anyone that takes classes at a for profit school, but do your research and make sure the school is the best choice for you and your career plans. There are regionally accredited colleges that offer online distant learning, plus the credits are transferable. If I decide to transfer to Georgia State or any other regionally accredited school in Atlanta, I can without having tons of credit transfer problems and that is important to me since I plan to in the coming future. Online learning is not just an option that non regionally accredited or for profit schools offer, but it is just best to choose which one is right for you whether it is for profit or not.
4. Procrastination is the devil. I am graduating in 2017 (class of 2012 high school graduate) and part of that is due to me procrastinating, while the other reason is because I kinda just now figured out what I may want to do and have switched my major, transfered schools, and was just all confused in life when it comes to what I want. I now have a career goal outline plan that I plan to stick with and right after high school I didn’t . Nevertheless, as long as the outcome is success and personal satisfaction/happiness then trial and error is worth it.
5. I now take classes all year around, at least two to three each semester, and this is worth it but never take on more than you can handle. I tried when I first decided to switch to online distant learning for my undergraduates, and since I was new to the process….I was struggling. But, if you want to graduate with your class or within four to five years….then taking one class a semester is not the way to go unless you take some classes online and others in an actual class room setting.
Bottom line, there are several different success routes when it comes to higher learning and online distant learning is not that bad, especially when it’s cold outside and I can be productive in my pajamas in my bed lol. Either way, take whatever route is the best for you not what is the most traditional.