Strategies for learning online
Make technology work for you
Your instructors will use a variety of tech tools and platforms throughout your course. Take a tour of some of the big ones:
Did you know?
Tools such as recorders and readers can help make technology more accessible. For example, ReadSpeaker is a text-to-speech reading tool embedded in Brightspace. ReadSpeaker is available to all SAIT students, though it’s particularly useful for anyone with difficulty reading print. Connect with Accessibility Services to learn more.
Understand your course
Take a stroll around your virtual classrooms. Check out your course outline. Familiarize yourself with the assignments. Find out how to reach your instructor.
Create a schedule
Why make a schedule? Routine helps with focus. Plus, planning ahead can help you feel prepared — not scared — for what's next.
Grab your day planner, open your Google calendar or favourite calendar app, and start your schedule.
Speaking of routine, get up and get dressed like you’re actually going to school. This helps separate class time from home time.
Set up your learning space in a location where distractions are limited. Turn off Netflix. Put your phone on do not disturb. Make sure you’re comfortable and can focus. Having trouble with noise online? Try a tech blocker such as SelfControl, Mindful Browsing or Freedom.
Be active online — in your course and your community
- Treat your class like a job. Show up and be an active participant. Acknowledge challenges and seek out support.
- Ask questions. Email your instructor and/or post messages on discussion boards. Use a descriptive subject line and include your name, class and student ID number.
- Participate. Log in to your classroom every day. Respond to discussions.
- Watch your word count.
- Give feedback. Let your instructor know if something is or isn’t working.
Live lecture tips
- Read the questions carefully before responding.
- Share relevant personal experiences. Storytelling makes you relatable.
- Be considerate, polite and appropriate. Avoid trying to prove your point of view is the right one.
- Be respectful. Take care when you post comments.
- Use people’s names.
- Type responses into a Word doc first, then copy and paste them into the discussion board. This way you can spellcheck and you won’t lose your response in the system.
Not everything is going to work perfectly the first time or all the time. Give yourself and the tech a break.
For more strategies, connect with an academic coach.
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