Question One: Schedules
Considerations about SchedulesWhile online learning is flexible and can be accessed “anytime, anywhere,” online students should have schedules that allow them to focus on coursework each week with minimal distractions.
Question Two: Time
Considerations about Time
Online courses require at least as much, if not more, of a time commitment than traditional courses. Completing coursework can take from five to fifteen hours or more per week. You may find that you need to be online almost every day.
Question Three: Time Management
Considerations about Time Management
In an online course, you are dependent on yourself for motivation and focus to complete tasks before the deadline. Waiting till the last minute to turn in work can be complicated by troubles with technology. Finishing tasks early can help to alleviate stress.
Question Four: Reading and Writing
Considerations about Reading and Writing
In an online class, almost all communication is text-based. You must be comfortable reading information and communicating in writing. Reading and writing take more time than listening and responding. This is a reason why more time may be required in an online class.
Question Five: Online Discussions
Considerations about Online DiscussionsOnline discussions are a way to interact with the course material, students and the instructor. Being actively engaged in an online discussion takes time but can be the most rewarding part of an online course.
Question Six: Asking Questions
Considerations about Asking Questions
Visual clues and body language are ways a face-to-face instructor determines if students are present and understanding the material. These clues are not available in online classes. The only way an online instructor can “see” you are present and understanding material is through regular communication.
Question Seven: Computers
Considerations about Computers
The personal computer is the primary learning and communication tool in most online courses. You don’t need to be a computer guru to succeed. But you do need to have some basic technology skills, such as word processing and using a Web browser.
Question Eight: Troubleshooting
Considerations about Troubleshooting
There are resources at Boise State to help you troubleshoot some technology problems but being comfortable recognizing and troubleshooting basic computer problems when they occur will help lower stress levels and leave more time to focus on coursework.
Question Nine: Internet Connection
Considerations about Internet Connection
Regular access to a reliable Internet connection is crucial to online learning success. You can think of the Internet like the car you would drive to an on-campus class. If your car is broken or unavailable you need to make other arrangements to get to class.