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How to be Successful Online

How can I be successful in my online courses?

Organize your schedule
Block out time to do course work.  The normal rule of thumb is each course includes 42 instructional hours (also known as class time) and about 84 hours of out of class readings and assignments.  

For each 6 week course you should plan to spend 7 hours on in-class activities such as participating in synchronous or recorded lectures, posting on the discussion board, watching assigned videos, working in groups through breakout rooms. In addition to those 7 hours, you should plan for 12-15 hours for completing assigned readings and assignments.

Set Expectations
Tell others you are taking online courses and ask them to understand your new commitments and keep you accountable to persevering and keeping your commitments

Talk to your instructor
Even for questions that may seem trivial, seek out guidance from the beginning.  Don’t wait until the last minute to ask questions.  Take advantage of the online office hours your instructor provides.

Familiarize yourself with the Technology
Make sure you have the computer programs installed on your computer that you will need for your course.  Typically the Microsoft office software: Word Processor, Excel and PowerPoint.  

Go on to the learning management system where your course will be located as well as the online portal where your student information will be kept such as your student bill and schedule.  

Find the library webpage and follow the steps to get remote access to the databases.  Watch or Read tutorials available for how to use this technology.

Helpful Link:
Student Portal Website

Know the resources available to you and seek help when you need it
A great way to do this is through the online orientation.  There are online tutoring services available to you and a student services team that can answer questions and direct you to the resources or the appropriate office.

Surf the Course Resources
Typically Instructors will give you additional readings, videos, website links that are not required but recommended.  These make great starting points for material for assignments.

Connect with Eastern
Be a part of Eastern’s large and diverse community.  Follow Eastern on Twitter, become a fan on Facebook.  Watch video clips on the Eastern Media Server.

Find a Friend
The purpose of online courses is not for you to sit at home in your Pajamas, but to get to interact with people you normally wouldn’t get to meet.  Friends can be similar to you or complete opposites in how they think about topics or issues.   Friends also come in handy when it comes to forming groups for projects, networking after the class is over or even encouraging each other along the way. You can find a friend through the introductions in your class or the first week of discussion board postings.  Send a personal email or chat with that person outside of class.

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