Online Learning- Flourishing
With the birth of online learning in the 80’s, it has drastically changed the training industry and is showing rapid progress and evolution.
Thousands of free online courses are offered by universities like MITOCW, MOOC providers like edX, Coursera, FutureLearn and NovoEd.
Organizations prefer online training and development courses for their staff to save massively on cost and time, and at the same time sharpen their skill-sets. Fortune 500 firms organized 73.6% of their technology-delivered training through online methods (workforce.com). 28.1% revenue (that is $56.2 billion out of the total $200 billion) of the corporate training industry comes from eLearning (Global Industry Analysts).
Though online learning is totally different from traditional classroom training in terms of attending classes and interacting with trainers & students, it is no different when it comes to actual learning. It comes with its own challenges in the time of distraction. Either you are a beginner or advanced learner, there are few things which should be avoided while learning online to get maximum benefit out of it.
- Enrolling without Complete Info: A common mistake made by students, sometimes even by professionals, is to enroll, just because someone referred or is pursuing that certification. You must not do this, as your goal, caliber, knowledge; future plans for career progression and affordability may or may not match with someone else’s. Even if you want to pursue a specific course you must go through the complete information on the course, match it with your needs, and verify its accreditation, market value and the support services they extend. There can be another academic advisor whose programs has a better marketability than yours.
- Wait or take things for granted: The beauty of the online ecosystem is that nobody is visible, so you must feel the presence and show your presence to your academic advisor. You must ask a lot of questions, doubts, information and queries. You must explore the possibilities and opportunities of finding answers from websites like stackoverflow, Quora and other forums as well. Another beauty of online learning is, flexibility in timings, you get your answers anytime, any day even midnight.
- Surrender to Procrastination: Chances of developing procrastination are quite high unless you have a fixed scheduled time every day, just like a traditional classroom hours. This makes you stick to the plan & develop a habit of persistence as well. Along with having a scheduled time, you also need to make sure you turn off notifications on phone especially social media notifications. Plan your day and schedule your study time so that you do not stay behind.
- Feel alone: It is usually felt that when you are learning online you are alone. The fact is you are not alone, but have hundreds and thousands of similar people doing the course, instructors and advisors. The benefits of interacting with others is, you get new information, share ideas, concepts and grasp concepts faster. When you do not do you miss learning new and innovative things. Try to socialize in this environment to learn better and faster. Do not limit yourself; explore things, people, groups who can enrich your online learnings. This is also a way by which you can resolve or clarify and question or query.
- Do Not Celebrate: People get bored and lose interest slowly while learning online. The Very common reason behind it is they do not celebrate their accomplishments. You must celebrate your achievements, even if they are small, like finishing a chapter which you felt was quite lengthy and tough. Like how you managed to complete a field activity, without hampering your daily official responsibilities. All these will keep you motivated and you will elevate your mood and rejuvenate yourself. In the ecosystem of online learning, the possibilities of getting praised are very minuscule.
Your decision to opt for an e-learning course can get you dividends only when the direction chosen is correct and you follow the order. Your sense of commitment, time-management, self motivation and temperament are the key to learn things faster, smoother and adapt to learning online effectively. You just must align all these to the online learning ecosystem.