Online classes are not necessarily easier than traditional classroom courses. Online courses require you to be responsible for accessing course materials, managing your assignments, and remaining in contact with your instructor. Here are some best practices and helpful hints that may be useful.
Have a good understanding of the amount of time that your online class will take. Online and hybrid classes replace time that you would spend in class with online work. In addition to that work, you will have homework to do too. As a guideline, you should plan to spend 3-9 hours per week working on a 3 credit course. For some students the time may be less while others may need more time and some classes will require more time on task as well.
Develop a regular schedule for working on your class
You should establish a regular schedule for working on your online or hybrid course work. Studies have shown that students who have scheduled their time to work on these types of classes are more successful than those students who do not. In order to be able to focus on your work during this time, let your family/friends know that the time that you are working on your class should be interruption free.
Don’t wait until right before an assignment is due to submit it
Many students wait until just before an assignment is due to submit it. This can be problematic if you encounter a problem with your computer or your internet service provider. It is recommended that you submit your work at a time that if you encounter difficulty you can find an alternate way to submit your assignment (like working from the library or a friend’s computer).
If you have a question, be sure to send an email to your instructor or post in a questions discussion board. If you have a question, it is likely that other students also have the same question, so don’t be afraid to ask questions. Additionally, the longer you wait to have a question answered, the further you will get behind, so ask questions as soon as you have them so you can move forward. Remember your instructors are there to help you.
Working Technology and Tech Skills
If you are enrolling in an online or hybrid course, you should have basic technology skills and regular access to a computer with the required software for your class, and an active internet connection.
Technology skills you should have include ability to use the Internet, email skills, word processing skills, ability to copy and paste, etc. Specific classes may have additional required technology skills.
Back up your assignments
You should make sure that you have back ups of your assignments. It is recommended that you save your assignments on the hard drive of your computer and to your hard disk space on mySCC. You can also save copies on a flash drive.
If your computer breaks find an alternative
As a student enrolled in an online or hybrid course, you are responsible for finding an alternate computer with Internet access if your computer becomes unusable. You are welcome to use the computers on the SCC campus located in the library and the Tech Center. Additionally, computers with Internet access are often available at public libraries. It is also allowable to use a friend or family member’s computer if available.
Using the discussion board
Discussion boards have been created to foster discussion among you, your classmates, and your instructor.
Discussion board postings are often graded and should be well written. All postings should be answered completely with an answer written in your own words (not written word for word from your textbook or the Internet) and should include some commentary from you on what you think of the subject matter and any local perspective that you know of or have researched. If appropriate, you should include a citation of any sources that you are using.
Your response should always be respectful and can include additional questions that you have, additional resources in regard to the question, or additional information that you can add to the student's response.
It is recommended that you create your discussion board postings in a word processing program and then copy and paste the content into your posting. We encourage this because sometimes the Internet connection will timeout while you are writing your posting.