1. Identify your goals and priorities: Decide what you want out of school and what you must do to get it. Is your education a priority right now?
  2. Analyze how you’re spending your time now–determine what you’ll have to give up in order to complete your course work. Do you have anything you can give up, or will the online course be a real struggle with your current schedule?
  3. Make a study schedule and stick to it! Maintain self-discipline and avoid procrastinating–don’t “put it off” or wait until the last minute to do your work.
  4. Create a private space where you can study so that you’re not distracted or interrupted frequently. Be comfortable, but not so comfortable that you’ll fall asleep!
  5. Get the support of your colleagues, friends, and family. While they go off and have fun, you may have to study.
  6. Understand assignments and write them down in one place to avoid forgetting something.
  7. Buy all required text and study materials and READ THEM!!
  8. Be able to communicate through writing, as it is the primary vehicle you’ll be using to “talk” with your classmates and professors, as well as when you complete assignments to be handed in to your instructor.
  9. Participate! Think before you contribute your ideas, comments, and perspectives on the subject you are studying, and read what your classmates have to say. Be respectful of differing opinions, as there is rarely only one way to do anything. Give positive feedback freely and negative feedback with kindness.
  10. Be open-minded about sharing life, work, and educational experiences as part of the learning experience. When you’re online with your classmates, be open and friendly. You’ll discover you’ll know more about your online classmates than you ever knew about your in-person classmates.
  11. Communicate effectively with instructors–be willing to ask questions and “speak up” if you’re having a problem. Remember, instructors can’t see you or read your mind!
  12. Try to apply everything you learn as you learn it, or if you can’t apply it, try “teaching” it to someone else. These techniques will help you remember the information more easily.
  13. CELEBRATE when you complete a course! You’ve worked hard and you deserve a time to relax and be proud!