More and more adult learners are taking advantage of the opportunity to learn online. Reduced costs, more flexibility, wide choice of courses and learning from the comfort of their own home makes online study an option that many are selecting.
Students have full ownership of their online learning and take responsibility for their own work, however, they are also responsible for ensuring that the end result is achieved. These 8 tips for learning online show how this can be done.
1 Do your Research
There are many online training providers for any given subject. Before signing up or purchasing a training course, make sure that you have evaluated the course material and that you’re happy with the way that the subject is being taught. Check simple things – can you understand the instructor? Are they speaking too quickly? Is there enough narration, too much narration? We’re all different, so making sure that you are comfortable with the course is imperative, after all you’re going to spend the next weeks or month or year learning from it.
Before enrolling onto any online learning, check that you have the right learning environment. This could be at work or at home, but you need to have a quiet area where you can study without interruption. It is also likely that you will need certain technical specifications on your laptop/PC – ensure that you have checked the requirements with the training provider.
2 Time Management
This is probably the most important skill needed for training online. Set aside periods of time through the week; firstly to work your way through a section of the course, then later to review what you have learnt. It’s difficult to do, but by putting a schedule into place, you’ll soon slip into the routine. The amount of time that you need to dedicate will depend on the course that you are studying; check with the course provider for details of how much time should be dedicated.
3 Put Into Practice
Whenever possible, put your learning into practice as soon as you can, the more you use what you are learning, the easier those lessons will become.
4 Use The Internet
Like in classroom based learning, you need to find further resources to reinforce learning. Use online forums to discuss the topic that you are covering, ask questions and see if you are able to advise another learner. Find pages on Facebook or groups on LinkedIn that may give you more information. By taking the learning outside the realms of provided course materials, you are expanding your knowledge further and enhancing your learning experience.
5 Take Notes
Many online training courses now have study guides, or re-cap lists available, but taking your own notes will help you to retain information. It changes the experience from just looking at a screen and listening to an online trainer to you becoming more active in the learning process.
6 Familiarise Yourself with the Test Process
Ensure that you know how to log on to sit your exam and that you know what to expect. Take sample exams before you sit the real thing. Waiting until the day that you are about to sit the exam is not the best idea!
7 Keep Motivated
Motivation can be difficult when learning without direct contact with other students, keep reminding yourself of why you are doing this. Is it to get a job or a promotion or a salary rise? Look at the end result that you will achieve and keep working towards it!
There is no magical formula for guaranteeing success, following the above tips should help, but it’s simply down to hard work and dedication!