Is eLearning Right For Me?
The question is often asked whether eLearning classes are easier or harder than traditional on-campus classes. The answer really depends on you. eLearning classes offer a flexible alternative to the traditional on-campus class. These classes can be great for those who cannot fit face-to-face classes into their busy lives or just prefer an online setting. There are essential skills, however, that will make your eLearning experience easier. We highly recommend you consider carefully both your technical and learning skills before registering for an eLearning class. Taking the time to know your strengths and to brush up on those skills you struggle with can make a huge difference in your eLearning experience.
The more comfortable you are using computers and technology, the smoother your eLearning experience will be. General skills include:
- Navigating and finding information on the Internet
- Using email
- General word processing including creating/saving/opening documents
- Downloading and Uploading files
- Creating screen shots
Please consider carefully your comfort level with computers and technology. If you feel you need more computer skills before attempting an eLearning class we would recommend you take one of these on-campus courses or find tutorials online.
- BTEC 105–This class is good for anyone with little to no experience with computers.
- BTEC 150–This class is for those with a little bit of experience but need to expand their knowledge to become more comfortable.
In addition to the above classes, the Pathways Center offers several workshops about using computers and technology.
eLearning classes offer a different style of learning than traditional on-campus classes. For some, this new style of learning can be a struggle and for some it can meld with their personal learning style perfectly. It's a good idea to know your learning skills before committing to an eLearning class. Skills that make a successful eLearning student include:
- A general comfortability with using reading and writing as your primary means of learning
- Self-motivation and discipline
- Good time management skills and the willingness to put in the time necessary to complete the work
- The ability and willingness to communicate through writing–the instructor can't see the confusion on your face in an online setting!
- The ability and willingness to utilize critical thinking
- A positive attitude and the willingness to work through problems as they arise without letting them derail you
- Ability to familiarize yourself with the resources and contacts available to you for assistance
For more information regarding what a successful eLearning student looks like check out this great article from the Illinois Online Network.
SmarterMeasure–Self Assessment Test
We encourage you to take the time to take this self-assessment test. It takes approximately 35 minutes to complete and will give you an evaluation of your tech skills as well as your learning style and where you could use more knowledge.