Are you prepared for online learning? | Stark State College | North Canton, Ohio
eStarkState online learning

Are you prepared for online learning?

Web courses follow the same semester schedule as traditional classes, offering convenience and flexibility. The biggest difference is the instructor is behind the screen and not right in front of you each week. Students engage with the content and instructor through the College’s Learning Management System (LMS), not face-to-face in the classroom.

Online students should be self-motivated, able to schedule time effectively and committed to online learning. Take our web learning survey to help you decide if a web course is right for you.

Required technology tools

  • Computer or laptop – These are the best devices to use for online learning. They have all the features needed to re­view course materials, take tests, and complete assignments.
  • High-speed internet connection – You will need a strong, stable internet connection because many of our classes use videos and online testing. Gaming and streaming from other users in your house will impact the strength and stability of your internet connection.
  • Web browsers – Preferred browsers are Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome for both Mac and PC users. Using any other browser will result in issues with submitting tests and homework.

Limited technology tools – not recommended

  • Chromebooks – While Chromebooks work for many courses, computer science and engineering courses require specific software packages that are not compatible.
  • Handheld Devices – iPads, tablets, or cell phones are not the same as computers/laptops. Limited features will prevent you from completing all required activities.

Computer knowledge and skills

Basic skills

  • Understand terms such as mouse, drag, open, select, file, URL, post, hyperlink, upload, download, etc.
  • Know how to save, copy, and find files/folders on external storage and hard drives.
  • Download and upload files.

Email skills

  • Send, open, reply to, and forward a message
  • Enter a message subject and body
  • Send an attachment
  • Open and/or save an attachment

Web browser skills

  • Go to a specific URL
  • Follow a hypertext link
  • Conduct a basic search using a search engine

Word processor skills

  • Open a new or existing file
  • Save a file and rename a file
  • Download and upload files

Managing time and organizational strategies

  • Managing time – Online classes require a time commitment. Remember, the lecture time of a traditional class is replaced with time spent independently reviewing course materials. To succeed online, you must schedule approximately 8 hours a week, per class, to review learning materials and complete assignments.
  • Using organizational strategies – Online classes have a set structure with assignments, discussion posts, tests, quizzes, and other requirements due each week of the semester. Without face-to-face interactions with instructors, it is up to you to plan when you will study and do homework. Setting daily and weekly goals is key to making it work.

Independent learning skills

  • Reading and understanding instructions, course materials, and textbooks – Online learning requires learners to work independently with guidance from the instructor usually through the activity stream, weekly announcements, or email.
  • Asking for help – As you review course materials or complete assignments, you will have questions. You must be comfortable contacting your instructor and asking detailed questions. In addition, online tutoring is available for many subjects.

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