Tips for Online Students

Participation is the core element in an online course.

Because an online course environment is a different structure than the traditional classroom environment, an online student must have some particular skills. The student must be highly motivated and self-disciplined. It is important for online students to have good reading skills and the ability to understand and follow written instructions in order to be successful in an online course.

Ask as many questions as you need.

Because there is no physical classroom setting, interaction with other students and the instructor take place through the discussion board, announcements, e-mail and chat rooms. Unlike the classroom, instructors will not be able to tell if you are confused or if clarification is needed by facial expressions or body language, therefore online students must ask questions.

Be online often.

Students should read the course syllabus thoroughly and check their ASUN e-mail frequently. Students should also visit the course assignment pages regularly so they will not miss due dates or changes your instructor makes during the course. Most instructors scheduled due dates for assignments are not set in stone, so it is important that students check the announcements page regularly. When e-mailing the instructor, the student should consult the course syllabus for the instructor’s e-mailing preference and allow a reasonable length of time for the instructor to respond.

Make sure all correspondence to your instructors is professional. As a preventive note, it is important for students to remember that an e-mail to an instructor is just that: communication between student and instructor.

Be familiar with computers.

Basic computer skills are important to be a successful online student. Students taking an online course must be able to use a browser to navigate the Internet, be able to send and receive e-mail with attachments, create and store files, be able to retrieve files, copy and paste text, and download and install software from the Internet. Students who are not able to perform some of these basic functions may want to take a beginning computer course before they enroll in a course that is entirely online. It is also important to a student’s online success that the student’s computer meets the minimum browser requirements for My ASUN Portal.

To Summarize…

  • Become familiar with the ASUN Portal as quickly as possible.
  • Be self-disciplined and motivated.
  • Check your course site and ASUN e-mail regularly.
  • Keep in contact with your instructor and don’t hesitate to ask questions.
  • Participate in online discussions.
  • Be familiar with technology.
  • Carefully read all correspondence between your instructor and others at the institution.
  • If you don’t understand something, ask questions.