Online learning is an alternative route back into education rather than attending a physical college. Online courses are beneficial because they give you the chance to study whenever suits you best.
Whether that’s early in the morning, in your lunch break, or whilst the kids are at school, you decide.
No matter what it is you want to study there’s most likely an online course out there for you. So you’re able to get qualified from the comfort of your own home.
However, successful online students need to be self-motivated and determined individuals. Just like physical colleges, you’ll need to complete assignments or exams to progress with your course.
The only difference being that no one will be pushing you to finish your work. You need to do that yourself.
So you must be armed with the knowledge on how to stay focused no matter how long your course is. That way you’ll be more likely to get the grade you’re after and complete your online course.
To keep on top of your online course it’s a good idea to organise your time. Organisation is the key to success.
Managing what you’re doing and when will give you more clarity on what’s needed to complete your course. You won’t feel like the workload is too large if you’re able to break it down.
Plan in Advance
The most successful online students plan their studies in advance. Planning in advance allows you to set realistic goals of when you’re going to complete your online course.
You should factor in work, holidays, family commitments and any other special occasion.
By planning your study sessions you will already be mentally prepared to study when the time comes. Rather than trying to wing it as it’s less likely you’ll study on the spot in your free time.
The thing about online learning is that you can alter the schedule as you go. So if you find you’ve got less time on your hands than anticipated, that’s ok. Rearrange your studies to suit your circumstances.
The only time you’ll need to keep a date in mind is if you have exams to complete your qualification. Such as GCSEs or A Levels where the exams are held in May/June. If you’ve booked onto an exam then make sure you’re prepared.
Depending on your online course you could be studying for anywhere between a couple of months to up to two-years. That’s a long time to stay focused on one goal.
Reflecting on how far you’ve come can help you stay motivated and continue with your journey. Remember why it is you’re studying and what your goals are.
Reminding yourself why it is your studying can help re-ignite your desire to succeed and help you stay on track.
Set Short-term Goals
Setting yourself short-term goals can breakdown your workload into smaller more manageable chunks. This ensures you’re able to progress with your learning without feeling overwhelmed.
This can be anything from completing a page of an essay to revisiting some notes you’ve made. Whatever it is, make sure it’s possible to complete within your study session.
Once you start ticking off goals from your checklist you’ll find that the feeling of accomplishment will drive you forward. It’s more likely that you’ll achieve your overall goal of completing the course if you don’t feel stressed when studying.
You’ll end up enjoy your learning as it won’t seem like such a big feat. After all, receiving the qualification is important but enjoying the experience should matter too.
Keep Away from Distractions
Keeping away from distractions is a sure-fire way to keep you focused on the task at hand. Studies suggest it takes around 23 minutes to regain focus after being distracted.
So say you’re only studying for an hour and take ten minutes to scroll through Facebook. The second half of your studies won’t count for much as your brain isn’t focused and you’ll retain less information.
When taking a break it’s better to read a book or go for a walk instead. This gives your brain some downtime without being overly distracted.
When sitting down to study we advise you to only keep the necessities nearby. So no phones or TV.
Even if you’re studying in the lounge, turn the TV off and keep the remote far away. This will ensure your attention doesn’t wander when you’re supposed to be learning.
It’s also beneficial to keep your workspace clutter-free. That way you’re not tempted to get up halfway through and start clearing things away.
Speak to Your Tutor
Despite online learning being a more independent learning style, it doesn’t mean you’re completely alone.
Quality online learning providers will have dedicated tutors to support you throughout your learning experience. They’ll be experts in their respected field and be available whenever you need.
They’re like teachers in that they possess subject-specific knowledge and mark your work. However, they won’t structure your studies or make sure you stay motivated, that’s up to you.
If you’re struggling with your workload or aren’t understanding a particular concept then reach out to your tutor. They’ll make sure to give you the information you need so that you’re able to progress with your learning.
As the saying goes, “a problem shared, is a problem halved.” So, don’t be afraid to contact them as many times as you need. That’s what they’re there for.
Furthermore, they may already have a range of resources and study tips of their own to share with you. So, you won’t have to spend extra time discovering them for yourself.
Whatever reasons you have for getting back into education learndirect can help you reach your goals.
learndirect is one of the UK’s leading online learning providers. We offer a range of online courses from GCSEs to A Levels and more.
All our courses have flexible payment options to help you spread the cost and experienced tutors to guide you. They’ll provide constructive feedback and any extra assistance where needed.
To learn more on how to prepare for your online course read our blog here.
If you’re ready to start your online learning journey get in touch or browse our courses below.