Work from home, when you want, wherever you want — what could be difficult about online classes?
For many students, online courses are a great tool in managing the busy schedule of a student and employee. However, many students also assume that every online class will be much easier than a normal class when this simply isn’t the case.
Here are four reasons why online classes aren’t easy.
1. More work
You may think that online classes require less work than a normal class. To put it simply, online classes almost always require more work than a regular class. Firstly, everything that determines your grade must be written, formatted, turned in, and graded. This eliminates the easy points you might get from participation, discussion, in-class quizzes, and other things like that.
All of these points in an online class must come through actual assignments. Sometimes, this can mean even daily assignments just to catch up with the amount of work done in a normal class. Not to mention the amount of time it will take you to teach yourself virtually everything. There’s only so much the teacher of an online class can do to get you through the course and make sure you understand the material.
Most of the time, online classes require a lot more reading and thorough reading at that. Skimming won’t get you by in an online class because you’ll need very specific answers from the text for tests. Knowing these takes work, lots of work.
Finding motivation in a slew of homework and stress during college is tricky, if not impossible for most people. During in-person classes, this lack of self-motivation can be combated by seeing the professor on the regular and having them push and motivate you to do your work. It can also be done by seeing your peers excel and wanting to keep up with them.
However, during an online course, those motivation factors are virtually eliminated. The desire to succeed in the class comes from you and only you. The teacher can send you messages and emails, but the difference that will make is likely not a large one.
Doing your assignments, and doing them well, can take a lot of time and energy, especially in an online course. Because it is online, the pressure to succeed may seem lessened, but in reality, this is not the case. Self-motivation can be hard to come by, but if you have it, taking an online class may be a good fit for you.
3. Time management
One of the hardest things for most people, especially college students, is the concept of time management. It is far too easy to live in the moment as a college student with all the fun activities, clubs, and other things to do.
However, managing time is of the utmost importance when taking an online class. Unlike normal classes which happen regularly multiple times a week, your online class is totally free to be whenever you like. For many, this is a huge perk. It means you can schedule college around jobs, internships, and your social life.
However, it also makes it very easy to forget about your online class. Because you have no physical presence, and no teacher reminding you in person, it becomes so much easier to push your online assignments to the last minute.
To thrive in an online class, and not stay up until midnight for all of your assignments, requires a good deal of self discipline to space out the amount of work. This can be difficult to do with distractions pulling you away, but with the right amount of motivation, it can be done.
As stated above, most of your online homework, if not all, will have to be typed out for credit in the class. This can mean discussions, blog posts, responses, essays, and much more. However, it also means that all of your communication, with your teacher and classmates, is done through typing. This can be a great thing for some, but online communication can often be misconstrued.
Because of implications and connotations, sometimes we say things and people take them in a completely opposite direction. In typed communication, this is sometimes inevitable. During an online class, it is vital that you pay close attention to the things that you type and submit. Try to be sure and check your spelling and grammar and maintain as much professionalism as possible at all times.
For some students, online communication comes naturally and sometimes even easier than talking in person. For some other students, however, they would much rather talk in person than try to communicate through emails and the like. For those students, this aspect of online courses can be a huge detriment and make the classes way more difficult to succeed in.
Like all classes, online classes have their pros and cons, but hopefully realizing the aspects of both will help you choose the right classes for you!