Tips for Success

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How to succeed with Online Courses


Once you've decided to try online learning, consider these tips for getting the most out of your online learning experience. Remember, online courses are NOT easier than on-campus courses, so be prepared to spend at least 9-12 hours per week working on your online course.

GET ORIENTED - Be sure to attend the required orientation session, if one is scheduled. If you are new to online learning, consider taking the "Is Online Learning Right for Me?" self assessment.

BE PREPARED - Purchase all required course materials and load any course software within the first couple days of the semester and contact the professor immediately if you are having difficulty.

KNOW YOUR PC - Be an experienced computer user. You don't need to be an expert, but you should know how to download and install plug-ins and web-browsers, upload and download files, navigate and open multiple tabs in your browser, disable popups, enable cookies, have reliable high speed web access, and troubleshoot general issues. The computer labs on campus can be used if your home computer doesn't work or have the right software.

READ - Be sure to read all course information, syllabi, instructions, contact information, and communications from your professor and the college. Follow the requirements in the course to stay current with textbook reading assignments.

LOG IN DAILY - Be sure to log in on the first day of the semester and complete any introductory activities. Set aside time to take your class each week. Log in 3-5 times per week. This will prevent you from getting behind quickly as most online courses required your regular participation in discussion forums. You should also check your WSCC email daily for course related information. Important course information may come to your WSCC email before, after, and during the semester.

BE SELF-DISCIPLINED & ENGAGED - Be sure to manage and prioritize your time, be active, study hard, participate in online discussion, stay organized, submit assignments on time, don't procrastinate, keep a calendar or checklist to be sure you are on task. Self-motivation is also important because no one is going to tell you to login, study, and submit assignments. The key is to have a dedicated time set aside for your course work and to minimize distractions that hinder you from studying and participating.

BELIEVE IN YOURSELF & ASK FOR HELP - Believe you can do it? Have confidence in yourself, your academic ability, and expect to be successful. Be aware of where you need to improve and don't get behind. If you are unable to login, have technical issues or are confused, contact your instructor or the IT Help Desk immediately.