I’ve been out of the college scene for about 30 years so you can imagine how strange this feels. I have taken on-line classes for work and found them really great but I noticed it takes not only a willingness to show up and learn but a willingness to become acquainted with new skills and tools to navigate the class itself. The hardest part of starting a new class before was finding the classroom but now I am learning to navigate around the internet, finding strategies to remember multiple passwords, making sure to check discussions and email and making proper settings. The process is challenging! Having multiple options for managing time and work is great but it also takes time to figure out what works best for me. Sometimes that just means trying new things out and that can take time! Phew!
The assessment was somewhat helpful but sometimes my desire to find the “right answer” would override my understanding that this was not a “test” but an opportunity to reflect whether or not on-line learning is for me. Needless to say the assessment told me I was well suited. Perhaps someone who knows me and my habits well should have taken for me just to be sure. I am trying to stick to a “log on everyday” pattern. Next, I just really have to figure out what tools will work best for me. It seems I still am “hacking” around a bit and that is really no strategy. I hope logging on regularly and moving through the units will help me feel more at home and therefore better at finding what works best for me.
The tips from former students were helpful. To understand the beginning is a challenge gives me hope that I will be able to navigate this landscape like it is second nature before too long. I hope so. I do have to backtrack in the class sometimes to revisit what I thought I knew but had forgotten.
Some tools I have used before but not a lot. Google Docs I have used successfully. I’m not a “Skype” type. I had problems logging into the Blackboard orientation once but I have used it successfully on three other occasions so I hopefully I will try again and it will work out.
So far the best resources have been the people. Encouragement, humor and advise goes a long way with me. The tips are the best.