Skills for Effective Online Learning
Much has been written about the characteristics that make some learners successful. The list below represents a compilation of the most common features of successful online learners and some of the best practices that can lead to success.

The successful online learner should:

1. Possess self-motivation and self-disciplined study habits. Since the online environment lacks much of the structure present in the face-to-face classroom, you must exercise real commitment when adhering to deadlines. In an online course you will need:
> Log in regularly - usually several times per week.

> Plan to spend 9 hours per week on each 3-credit course.

> Be prepared to interact in large or small group written "discussions" with other students.

> Be able to compete individual or group projects and submit electronic files.

> Ask for help if technical or academic problems arise.

2. Be proficient with time management: students often decide to take online because they do not have time to attend class in person. But to be successful online, you must carve out time from family and work commitments to spend on your online coursework.
3. Meet the technical and computer skill requirements below:
> Have access to a reliable, internet-connected computer with an operating system that supports standard web browsers and word processing applications.

> The ability to download plugins and media readers that may be necessary to access some course content.

> Students with disabilities need to have access to any assistive technologies needed to navigate and read web content. Dillard University Student Support Services can help you determine what tools you need to study online.

4. Be able to communicate through writing: Moving from the face-to-face classroom to the online environment involves a transition from the spoken to the written word. Many online courses also require a great deal of reading in the course site.
> Have good research skills and understand basic web navigation and search strategies.

> Be able to work collaboratively, even when communication is via email or course discussion boards. You may not meet your fellow students in person or in a "synchronous" conversation, but online learning requires good social skills and "netiquette."

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