Types of Online Courses
During COVID, almost 100% of courses are listed as ‘ONLINE’, but there are different ways to participate in online courses. Make sure you understand if you are expected to meet ‘live online’ or not before you enroll in a course. The simplest way to figure out what kind of online course is listed in CUNYfirst is to check the meeting times.
If classes are TBA and don’t list a meeting time, then it is asynchronous and you will be allowed to complete the assignments on your own time (they will be due every week).
If there are meeting times listed, then it is synchronous/live and you should be prepared to participate in these classes just like you did before COVID, except online via Zoom or Blackboard Collaborate.
Tips and Strategies
Online learning is a great option for many students; however, you should know how to prepare. Here are some tips for success:
Access to Technology
You must have a computer at home with internet access and access to your student email account.
You must know how to use email, web browsers, word-processing software, and download files and create attachments. You must be willing to solve technology problems and not get frustrated easily with technology glitches.
You must be willing to communicate using technology tools like video or text chat and understand that quality learning can take place without face-to-face interaction. If you feel you cannot learn without interacting in person with the instructor and other students, then online learning might not be right for you.
Be Proactive and Self-Motivated
You must be motivated and disciplined with your assignments, and you must grow to be comfortable with reaching out and asking questions or help when you need it.
The amount of time you must devote to an online course is 6-9 hours a week for a 3 credit course, just like an in-person course.
You must have a growth mindset and see struggles or difficulties as a natural part of getting better at something. When you encounter something you can’t yet do, you must increase your effort and try new strategies.
Make A Plan
You need structure and a time management plan. Check your syllabus before your course kicks off, and commit to due dates on your calendar. Designate study times for each class, and stick to them.
It can’t be emphasized enough how important it is to look ahead when taking online courses. Check the syllabus and course map for assignments that will be due. Always know when assignments are due, and don’t wait until the last minute to complete them.