Are you fit for distance learning?
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Poonam Jain gives some pointers on the personal attributes required to be a distance learner
With rising bills and petrol prices, students are comfortable staying at home and taking an online course. Students are now readily adapting this mode of learning - both owing to the proliferating demand due to the technical know-how and the complexity of modern life.
However, not many people can keep up with this style of learning – with no teachers, classmates or that 'learning atmosphere' – some are prone to opting out half away. So what are the attributes one requires to see you through this form of learning? Read on:
Self motivator: Are you able to motivate yourself? And that you don’t need someone constantly pushing and patting your back for a job well done? Then distance learning is for you. Students, who opt for distance learning courses need to be self motivated and set their own goals. This requires you to maintain discipline and commitment in seeing yourself through.
Procrastinators refrain: Online education is not for someone deferring their work to a later date. It’s for those who complete their assignments on time. “These people enjoy the space they have and still are able to keep with the portions. It's for those who are dedicated and enjoy learning. It’s not the fascination of a mere degree that gets them to adopt to the distance learning mode,” says Sahi Arora, doing her creative writing through distance learning.
Resisting distractions: Distance learners are able to resist various distractions that come to them. An invite to a birthday bash, a social outing, telephone call, children, or mere boredom – distance learning requires you to be able to filter through all these distractions. You have to learn to balance such attractions that could be a hindrance for the course.
Don’t need the traditional environment: Online courses can be more boring than the traditional classes. This is the leading cause of dropouts. “Distance learners should be comfortable missing the social element that comes with a regular class,” adds Sahi. For example, if you have taken up a debatable topic, you are obviously going to miss the interesting classroom discussion, and consequently multiple opinions and perceptions that can help you get a better picture of the topic.
Tune into comprehension skills: “Classroom learning allows the levy of learning from listening to lectures and taking notes. With distance learning, it's just about reading and comprehending,” says Reena Bhat, who is doing her MBA online. Though their might be video recording and audio clips, most of the material comes in the form of written text.
Issues with technology: Good computer skills and high-speed internet connections are a must for the learner. “Students nervous about technology should look for online schools with readily accessible help desks and other technological guidance,” says Kim Clark, Journalist.