Like many students you may have chosen online learning because you have other commitments, such as work or family, so the time which you set aside for study may be different to a traditional learner. For example, you may study in the evenings or weekends, during your lunch break or while travelling or commuting! As an online learner you have the freedom to create your own schedule, unlike students on face-to-face courses who receive a set timetable.
There are a number of things you can do from the start of your course in order to get organised, plan your workload and manage your time:
- Spend some time at the beginning of your course familiarising yourself with what’s expected of you. Read through the course handbook or syllabus to help you do this.
- Add key dates and deadlines to your calendar. Set yourself targets and reminders so you don’t fall behind. If you feel yourself falling behind talk to your supervisor as soon as possible.
- Schedule in short spaces of time each week to log into your online course and complete shorter tasks such as checking emails, posting on discussion boards and replying to other students’ comments.
- Find a space where you can focus on studying. Different environments suit different people. You may prefer to work from home in a quiet room, or perhaps you find it easier to focus away from home such as in a local library or a café.
- Plan a timetable that works for you that fits around your regular commitments.