Top Tips to Remove the Barriers of Online Study
Whether you have a job or recently graduated from high school, online learning is something that you may adopt to work around your current lifestyle. In today’s modern, fast-paced world, technology has enabled us to bridge the barriers of communication. Online learning has definitely been touted as ‘revolutionary’ when it comes to education as it opens up different opportunities and experiences for the student and also the educator.
Sharon Sanders, AIT’s course coordinator for the Digital Design course states that there are a few main reasons why students choose to study online:
One of the great things about online study is the flexibility of allowing you to work your assignments around your schedule. “Online learning lets you fit classes into your busy schedules, making it easier to keep up with work and family and study on your own terms. Even if you live in regional areas you can still study, even if you are not near a city or university,” says Sharon. As long as you have reliable internet access and your own computer, you’d be able to connect into your class – all in your preferred environment!
Work & Study
If you’re great at time management, you could even hold a job while studying! The extra time you save daily – as you are not required to travel down to your institution for classes – could be allocated to a job. Having a steady income while pursuing a qualification in a field that you’re interested in definitely sounds like a good balance.
“Online education allows professionals to continue their careers while working towards a diploma or degree. Many working adults need to keep their current position to stay relevant in the field, but they need to update their skills to stay relevant. Online education can help them achieve this,” says Sharon. “Parents can even continue to upskill and study, while spending time at home!”
Learn with the help of the latest technology
There is a negative perception that studying online means that you miss out. Well, we can safely debunk that myth right now!
“It’s a different experience, but we have developed the content in a way that makes it engaging and interesting.” Sharon explains.
Online study is made up of a range of delivery methods that utilises the latest software and technology that negates the use of printed textbooks and worksheets! AIT uses Canvas, the cloud-based learning management system that makes both teaching and learning easier.
“Students will have access to our online library, and they will also find extra reading materials, videos links and up to date articles and readings on Canvas so they can research and explore related areas of interest,” Sharon adds.
Using Canvas means that you’ll be able to access the wealth of online resources on your computer, on mobile and on tablet – anytime, anywhere!
In addition, Sharon states that the online Diploma of Digital Design has been developed directly from the on-campus qualification, so the learning outcomes are the same and students come out with the same full set of digital skills that they would have developed if they had studied on campus.
Choose your pace
If you prefer to work in your own space, with minimal external input then online learning would be perfect for you. Engage with online lectures and peruse your reading materials at your own pace and space. The best part is…no distractions!
“Going at your own pace is shown to be a more effective learning method for independent learners. With online classes, you’re in charge of when and how much to study within the course framework,” Sharon states.
Connect, Network and Learn
Studying online doesn’t mean that you miss out on the social aspect.
“There blogs and discussion boards where students can discuss their ideas and post ‘work in progress’ images. We have found that students get the opportunity to connect, network and learn from other students through these methods. Teachers are also on hand to answer questions and emails and to advise students who may be struggling with some of the material or need guidance in the assessments,” Sharon says.
When asked what tips she has for students choosing to study online, Sharon advises that students definitely need to be self-motivated and organised. Students also need to have a dedicated workspace and ask for help if needed – make sure to communicate with your instructor or teacher right from the start, and especially if you feel like you are slipping behind, or don’t understand something about the material or assessments.