Over the years, remote learning has evolved into a multifaceted learning avenue. It has primarily been possible due to the advancement in technology and the internet. Online learning has bridged the accessibility gap for individuals, which is contributing to its soaring popularity. Additionally, the critical need for education has spurred the growing demand for online learning across segments.
As the world battles with a highly infectious pandemic, COVID-19, online learning has found all the more relevant in the field of education. While offices and businesses switched their operations and management to work from home, schools and other settings saw an instant and unprecedented shutdown. While some private and international schools could enforce the e-learning format, their government school and low-income private school counterparts had to shut down due to the unavailability of e-learning solutions completely by schools and students alike. The higher education sector has also been disrupted severely with delays in exams, new admissions, and campus placements.
Learning The Remote Way- Online Learning
Be it school students attending their regular lectures, college students looking to diversify their knowledge, or working professionals eager to upgrade their professional inclinations-online education is a boon to everyone. Online learning has helped people overcome the impediments of distance by providing access to online courses with certifications from top-notch universities. However, jumping into opting for a course isn’t the right way to go as learning is more than just course enrollment – it’s your time, money, and often dreams invested in a single online course.
Many of you may feel overwhelmed, initially adjusting to the academic space digitally. The obstacles in online learning may range from course curriculum, course goals, assignments, course materials, teaching, and assessment methodologies. Hence, it is essential to identify and push down the barriers to help you reach your intended learning goals.
While there is no magic formula that can transform your home into a classroom setting, following a few tips can help you prepare for an online learning experience. Let’s take a look at some well-reasoned tips for learners when taking an online course:
- Identify the Learning Objective
Identifying the core reasons behind your learning is the primary step before diving into the distance learning world. Ask yourself the following questions:
● What do you want to learn?
● What do you wish to gather from the course?
● What are the core areas you are interested in, and why?
● How will this course help uplift your academic or professional journey?
It is the first step to understand the purpose of your learning journey. For example, you are opting for a course in coding for kids- the first step is to uncover the learning objective.
2. Search a Platform that Offers a Supportive Community
Online learning is a novel approach to education, and its virtual set up can tend to minimize interactions. Opt for online learning platforms that offer social interactions and discussion forums that are likely to be missed in a webinar setup with no dialogues.
Subscribing to digital online platforms like Coursera, where the forums of every course are super active and engagingly helpful, is essential. Some courses and domains panning across portals like data science and AI even have dedicated Facebook communities. Schools that have incorporated online classroom programs in the wake of the pandemic are working extra hard to keep the learning more interactive and engaging.
The presence of a community creates a sense of connectedness and helps in constructive conversations around topic discussions, and encourages active learning through peer support.
In these COVID times, it would also help reduce the feelings of isolation and foster social gatherings online while distancing.
3. Be Disciplined and Stick to Schedules During Online Learning
With no teacher in the same room, it can get easier to postpone assignments and procrastinate. Sticking to a plan and instilling some discipline in routine is critical to completing online courses.
Parents can help their young children to stay on top of their deadlines by using visual markers on calenders or helping them with their work. With no classroom rules to abide by, children may not adapt to learning from homes, and hence parents need to plan a schedule for their children.
4. Create Your Study Station For Learning Online
Ensure you aren’t attending your classes lying on the bed or cozied up on the couch in front of the television with your pet. Create a study space in the room with a table and a chair. Cleaning the clutter from your learning space is necessary to enhance your productivity.
5. Track Your Progress While Learning Online
While attempting online education, it’s essential to check your progress to assess your learning curve. Talk to your teacher regarding this and stay updated on your performance in the tests and exams.
6. Resolve The Barriers
Online learning can often present itself with barriers, including access to teachers and learning resources. It’s critical to opt for platforms that effectively resolve such obstacles. Recently zoom.com has introduced discussion break-out groups, which have facilitated more productive conversations in meetings. When choosing online learning, select platforms that are enriched with such technological interventions to help improvise your overall learning experience.
Try to customize your child’s device according to his needs by using the built-in technology on the devices. Also, switch on parental control modes or alarms to avoid young children from getting distracted while studying. Ask the instructors questions such as- How can struggling learners adapt to this form of education? What are the additional sources or course materials?
7. Communicate With Your Peers
Discussion forums are an essential aspect of online learning as they simulate class discussions in an online setup. While these discussions are asynchronous and time-independent, the driving force remains the same- to encourage creative thinking, boost active learning, reinforce community building and social interaction among students.
Make sure you communicate your ideas in the discussion forum. Parents can help their kids participate in discussions by encouraging them to speak out during their online lessons.
8. Reach Out To Your Teacher
Online classes may hold you back from being very vocal about your doubts and questions on the subject matter. However, communicating them to your teacher for a solution is critical to see a growth in your learning curve. If speaking out during an online session bothers you, try reaching out via mail, text, or a call as permissible.
For parents of young children, it is essential to directly communicate with your child’s teacher to understand the course work, review homework instruction, or talk about your child’s performance in general.
9. Complete Your Assignments On Time
Assignments help us gauge an understanding of the topic. Try to finish your tasks on time, similar to previous times. Try to invest your energies in the assigned work and give it your best shot. It will help you effectively analyze your progress in the course.
Parents can help their younger kids to finish their assignments on time by keeping a check on their work.
10. Be Proactive and Manage Your Time
Being proactive while taking an online learning program will help you perform brilliantly. Draw an effective strategy to undertake your online classes while still maintaining your usual routine. Also, it is primordial to chalk out a timetable to help yourself learn better without getting consumed by your coursework.
It took a microscopic virus to transform the primitive chalk-blackboard classroom model to a technology-driven virtual model, even if temporarily. Considering how online learning as a tool came in handy amid the pandemic-we must learn the basics of it. Remote learning, when combined with a robust planning and design strategy, can be a productive and satisfying experience for both teachers and students.
Leveraging the present wave of online learning by integrating it with EDtech platforms and academics can help build a resilient education system in the future.