Signing up for college is new and exciting for anyone who is planning to attend. There is
a lot of decisions to make regarding what college to attend, what degree to strive for and in the technical world of today, a student needs to decide if the online structure will work for them. Proverbs 1:5 says “Let the wise listen and add to their learning and let the discerning get guidance” (NIV).
Knowledge is power and I believe God wants us to pray and search for information about the college we are supposed to attend and most importantly if we are able to attend online. Ecclesiastes 10:10 states, “If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed, but skill will bring success”(NIV). When choosing to go to college online, the student must have strong personal and learning characteristics along with certain factors that will help make the online student successful.
The article that I chose to read was ‘Student Preparation For Distance Education’, by Mark
Taormino. It was very enlightening and it talked about some great points to achieve successfulness with online learning. One of the points that the article talked about was having a strong personal characteristic such as integrity and to be motivated. The definition for integrity is to be honest and fair and to be complete or whole. Integrity is one of the major keys while on this journey. It’s not just making sure you avoid plagiarism or cheating, but keeping your nose the grindstone and keeping yourself motivated when you want to quit everything. Another strong characteristic that a student will need to have is being able to be an independent learner.
There are going to be many hours to devote to homework and studying. The more classes a student takes the more hours they will have to carve out of their already busy schedule, so long distance learners need to possess selfreliance to develop the independent learning characteristic (Taormini, 2010, pg 58). The article talks about a couple of factors that come into play with long distance students as well. The first factor of being an online successful student is environmental, where family can help and support the online learners. Family can help with multiple things, like fixing dinner, doing laundry and doing errands ,if there are any other licensed drivers in the home. This will give the online student a chance to use time management a must have to keep the student on track. If the student does not manage their time they will not be able to turn in their work in on time to get the adequate help from the instructor if it is needed. The second and equally important factor is the technical aspect. To be successful in the online structure, it will help if the student is somewhat tech savvy. Everything from communication with the instructor, taking tests, turning in homework and watching any discussion is done with the connection of the internet. It is imperative to have the right kind of software to protect your computer. Also making sure the learner has the correct word processor, because of all the research papers that will be written.
After reading the article I was surprised to find out that Taormino stated “ there are certain kinds of students that can learn online”. (As cited in Boyd, 2004, pg 3139). Students, much like myself, getting ready to take online courses may think it is going to be far more easier then in a classroom setting, but that is not necessarily true. If the online learner does not have the
right learning characteristic, like being self reliant and highly motivated, they may find out that they are not able to be successful and be among the many that have dropped out. That is what challenges me. I don’t want to be another drop out statistics, yet again. The strategies in the ...
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