Earning your degree online is a great achievement and is becoming more common every day, so much so in fact that some of the biggest universities, awarding the most degrees per year in the U.S. are schools that offer predominantly online programs.
What does that mean to you? If you’re taking online courses or completing your degree online, not only are you in good company, but also, there are numerous resources available to you as you progress through your courses in the expanding online student space.
Getting help from tutors and experts knowledgeable in the subjects that you struggle with or for classes with material that you find more challenging is easier now than ever. Plus, now tutoring programs are well designed for the online learner. There are a good number of online tutoring sites that make getting help convenient, easy and worthwhile. Some of these include, Tutor.com, InstaEDU, Smarthinking and Student of Fortune. Services such as these provide study, subject, homework and paper help so that you can produce the best results in all of your classes.
Online Study Groups & Discussion Boards
Aside from the discussion boards and study groups already inherent in your courses, you can get additional feedback and do even more brainstorming and sharing of ideas with widely used online college study groups and discussion boards, which provide a larger pool of people and ideas. With these mass-audience resources, you have the chance to expand your professional network and gain more insight on your class subjects. If you’re having trouble getting ideas rolling on your course discussion platform, try starting discussions on sites such as piazza.com and openstudy.com.
Just because you are not getting face-to-face time with your instructors, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take full advantage of them as your most important resource in any course that you take. Your instructors are your go-to experts, and may often times have designed the course that you’re taking aside from mapping out the syllabus. Don’t be afraid to ask them your questions and to create a relationship with your instructors. You may have to be patient about getting your answers back, instead of receiving the instant gratification of asking your questions in person, but your instructors are there to help you and understand that you will need to rely on them as your main resource in their classes.
Tech Support, Computer Tools & Search Engines
As a search engine, Google is a great resource that you can ask anything of and almost always get some type of answer from. When you’re struggling with technical issues while you complete your online course work, always ask for help from your college’s tech support team, but if that doesn’t resolve your issue, don’t be afraid to type in the issues that you’re having on search engines such as Google to see what types of answers come up.
In addition, Google offers a host of tools to help you get more tech savvy, such as Google Drive – which allows you to create, share, edit and merge Word documents and spreadsheets with multiple people – Google Calendar to stay organized and keep track of your schedule online, and research tools such as Google Scholar and Google Books – which help you find research, citations, quotes and more in books and academic articles.
Get tech savvy via an endless selection of educational tools and resources available online and by preparing in advance for the technical demands of each of your classes, and you’ll be ahead of the game before your classes even begin!