So you’ve taken the plunge and signed up for an online class — how exciting! It might not seem that way now, but you’ve really made a great choice in getting ready for a bright new future. Whenever we start something new, we’re bound to be nervous. However, you just need to know what to expect with an online class and then you’ll be good to go.
One of the first things that you might not expect is how fast an online class normally moves. It’s hard to keep up sometimes, but you will just need to make sure that you hit the ground running. The teacher will expect a lot more out of your because you have a lot more resources at your fingertips than a student in a traditional classroom would have. You can pretty much do a web search for anything online, which means that you should be able to find the answers eventually — if they aren’t already in your textbook.
Textbook? Yes, you’re still going to have textbooks. Some classes do let you go off of free information, but generally speaking there is going to be an expectation that you really do pick up the textbook. The classroom exercises will be in the textbook, which means that you’re going to need to really make sure that you are following along carefully. Missing class time isn’t really a concern, but you don’t want to ignore the lectures that might be taped on audio format or even video for your use. Since everything can be accessed at a time that’s convenient for your, your teachers going to expect you to have everything together.
One of the things that you want to really avoid is getting behind. We know we said that earlier, but it really does bear repeating. The last thing that you want is to get behind because you’re going to have a hard time catching up. Classes online move fast because you really don’t have a lot of time to slow down for people. When class sizes can be larger than normal, you have to assume that everyone is going to either learn it, not learn it, or get help to learn it. This means that the teacher can safely move on without too much guilt. Sure, there might be people left behind but that’s the thing about adult education — it is what you make it.
There will be discussion that you’re going to need to participate in. If there’s one thing that online students hate most, it would have to be discussions. They do take up a lot of time, but it’s important to try to see the value of them. It’s one thing to think that you won’t need to make sure of them, but the truth is that your teacher will be watching how much you participate. So if you need some help or you need to ask for more time on something, the teacher is going to think back to those discussions. You don’t want your request denied just because it looks like you didn’t care enough to participate in the discussions, do you?
Overall, an online class is what you make of it. So if you work hard and really focus, there’s no limit to what you can achieve!