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Embrace Flexibility with Online University Study

Person holding a light bulb with digital brain illustration symbolizing innovative online learning technology.
Embrace Flexibility with Online University Study

Online university study is becoming more common as our lives become busier and digital communication improves. Millions of students around the world already take university courses online, and course providers have sophisticated multimedia learning experiences. For people in high demand who need a more flexible schedule, online study opens up a world of possibilities. When you study online, the classroom comes to you, your lectures can be listened to in your pyjamas, and it’s easier to fit study into your schedule around other obligations.

Although online learning allows students to study when and where they choose, this versatility should not be mistaken for ease or speed. Learning is a process that takes time to complete. You may be able to avoid travel time and the dreaded search for parking on campus by learning online, but you must also put in the time and effort to learn.

Do you want to take a short course or complete a degree entirely online? Before you jump in, here are a few things to think about.

Check your motivation for online university

Establishing why you want to study will assist you in deciding how to spend your time and change your lifestyle to accommodate your studies. Do you want more money, more work prospects, new transferrable skills, a new career path, or to advance in your current position? Studying can take time and effort, and you’ll need encouragement to keep going when things get tough. Knowing and reminding yourself of your motivations for studying will make achieving your goals a little easier.

You can also enrol in the course when you have enough time to commit to it. You won’t get much value out of what you learn if you just give it half your attention.

Consider your personal preferences

Consider if this method of learning is right for you before enrolling in an online course. While you will interact with students and academics in online discussions, the majority of your research will be done on your own. On-campus research could be more appealing if you prefer the immediacy of face-to-face contact when studying. Online research, on the other hand, is a great choice if you’re able to work alone and interact digitally.

Since many online courses are delivered at a rapid pace, you can feel compelled to keep up. Instead, give yourself permission to work at your own pace. You don’t have to compete with someone else. At the same time, don’t take too much time off or give yourself too much slack. Give yourself a serious pep talk if you’re continually putting off learning or failing to move on to the next segment.

Create a study space

When it comes to learning online, distractions and disorganisation are two of the most common failure factors. Make a daily study space for yourself—whether it’s your spare room or the kitchen table—and keep your textbooks and notes in a convenient location. Make sure your research area is peaceful and free of distractions.

It might seem self-evident, but you’ll need a computer and a stable internet connection to research online. Completing assignments and engaging in class would be challenging if you don’t have access to these resources. Don’t worry if you don’t have a lot of experience in technology. Universities provide technological assistance and orientation, as well as simple resources, to make online learning accessible to all. Also, it might be good for you to invest in a good pair of headphones to listen to online lectures or discussions.

Engage additional resources

Many students today use web-based study guides in addition to libraries, tutors, and on-campus services. Under the umbrella of STL9 Master of Applied Business, we have developed a comprehensive and user-friendly Study Guide, whose purpose is to help enhance students’ knowledge by increasing the repertoire of strategies, tools, and techniques to make a studying journey easier, more efficient, and more enjoyable. Some of you have just finished your undergraduate degree, while others have not studied for many years and may feel uncertainty and be worried about how you will perform. The good news is that learning is like riding a bike—you never forget it.

Time-management skills

You must be able to control your time effectively. The majority of courses are not delivered in real-time. Classes may not have fixed times. One of the many advantages of online learning is its versatility. It may also be a disadvantage for a student who procrastinates, is unable to adhere to a regular study schedule, or is unable to complete assignments without the help of a teacher on a daily basis. Effective time management skills do not appear out of nowhere. It is necessary to practice them. If you’ve done that, you’ll reap the benefits for the rest of your life. To improve yours, we recommend for you to firstly, examine the course syllabus for each of your classes and make a long-term strategy for finishing your big assignments; secondly, to make a daily “To Do” list to make the process of checking things off more enjoyable once you complete them.

  • Make a daily ‘To-Do’ lists – on your eLearning journey, the to-do list may be your best friend. They will assist you in studying more effectively and completing tasks more quickly. You also get the satisfaction of crossing each item off your list when you complete it. Depending on your personality, you can make large or extremely granular to-do lists. Choose the approach that suits you best. If you want to write things out step by step, do so because it will make the process more enjoyable for you. Alternatively, for the sake of convenience, you may group similar things together.

  • Follow time limits – Since online learning can cause eye exhaustion, taking breaks during study sessions will allow them to relax. You can also stretch any sore muscles and clear your mind before returning to the stuff.

Networking and contacts

It’s easy to get the impression that you’re learning on your own while taking online courses, but this couldn’t be further from the fact. The majority of online courses are based around the idea of collaboration, with professors and instructors strongly encouraging students to collaborate on assignments and lessons. Introduce yourself to other students and participate in online discussion boards to build relationships. When studying for exams or seeking input on assignments, your peers can be a valuable resource. Don’t be afraid to enlist their help in forming a virtual study group. It’s likely that they’ll enjoy it just as much as you do.

On the following websites students may use simple interfaces to form study groups, upload shared content to a central location, and hold web-based group meetings:

Practice makes perfect

Online courses are a great way to get the degree you need to achieve your objectives. Despite the fact that they each have their own set of challenges, following the advice above will help you succeed even in the most chaotic of situations.

Explore our related online learning tips and advice posts for more information on how to be a good online learner.

References and additional material

  • Wäschle ‘Procrastination and self-efficacy: Tracing vicious and virtuous circles in self-regulated learning’ Learning and Instruction, (2014)

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