Is Online Learning a Good Fit?

There is no doubt that studying and working on your own schedule from the comfort of your own home, favorite coffee shop, or while traveling is pretty appealing. That's why many adult learners choose online courses when working toward their degree or certificate.

Online courses provide you the independence and flexibility of being able to complete your work when you are at your best or most available during the day and week. You will also have the chance to read, conduct research, and interact with your facilitator and other students throughout the state of Arizona.

In order to have a successful online-learning experience, keep the following five tips in mind:

  1. Basic Computer Skills Needed
    You should feel comfortable using a computer and be familiar with word processing applications like Microsoft Word, as well as know your way around PowerPoint, web browsers, email, and attaching files. You should also be able to navigate the Internet with ease.
     

  2. Ensure a Stable High-Speed Internet Connection, Capable Equipment, and Software
    As an online learner, it is important to ensure that you have the right internet connectivity, operating system, and software. Click here for more information on requirements as an online learner at EMCC.
     

  3. Self-Motivation is Key 
    Taking an online program requires self-motivation and self-discipline. Unlike campus-based classes with a regularly scheduled place and time, the independent environment of an online class means you must take greater responsibility for keeping pace with the course schedule.
     

  4. Follow Assignment Due Dates
    With the exception of a few programs, online courses allow you to work independently. Unlike classroom-based courses, faculty and students like you each work at their own times and in separate locations. You might post comments in the discussion area of your course at different times than your classmates. But just like the classroom-based environment, online courses have deadline-driven assignments in addition to discussion participation requirements, so you will still need to get your work done by the due date.
     

  5. Manage Your Time
    Earning a degree online or on campus can take as much as 15 to 25 hours a week outside of class, depending on your program. It is important to factor in enough time for studying and pace yourself so coursework doesn’t build up and overwhelm you. You can also start slow by taking one course per eight week term, rather than diving into a full workload.

If you come into your online course with these tips in mind, you'll not only enjoy the flexibility of online learning, you'll thrive in the online environment!