Tips for Online Learning

Tips for Online Learning

Back to CAS OnlineCAS Tips for Online Learning 

Succeeding in an online learning environment requires time management, effective learning strategies, motivation, and consistent engagement with course content – the same practices as succeeding in a traditional face-to-face course. However, there are a few differences. Here are some tips to set yourself up for success:

  • Carefully review Moodle and the course syllabus with particular attention on the class structure, due dates, exam policies, and software or websites used in class. Also check the CAS semester calendar for important university dates and plan accordingly.

  • Even if you’re not coming to campus, wake up at a regular time, eat breakfast, and get dressed. Check Moodle and email daily. Cultivating a routine can set you up with a mindset for success and keep you on track.

  • Make sure you have a distraction-limited, comfortable space to study with all your supplies ready. When you feel stuck, change your environment, but avoid studying in bed!


Plan Class Time and Study Time


Schedule Class Time

Some of your classes will meet at scheduled times via live streamed lectures or video-conference (Zoom, Skype, etc.), but even for classes that don’t meet regularly, you should plan “class time.” Use this time to engage with your instructor or classmates, or to get introduced to new course content (like watching posted videos or reading a new chapter).

  • On a Weekly Planner, write in times for classes that will be meeting either online or face-to-face at scheduled class times (e.g., Biology lecture at 9:00 a.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays via Zoom).

  • Plan specific times for yourself for any other classes that don’t have prescribed times (e.g., “Attend” Psychology MWF 9 -10 a.m.) so that you keep up with the course content.

  • Use the first half of the Study Cycle to get the most out of your class time (preview before class, attend class, then review that information).


Schedule Focused Study Sessions

In addition to scheduling class time, it is crucial to also schedule study time. In order to succeed, you must go further than the initial introduction to new material. You must think critically and engage deeply with the content to learn how to apply the new knowledge.

  • On your weekly schedule, plan at least two Focused Study Sessions in between each class session. (Set a goal, execute without distractions, take a 10-minute break, then review your progress. What’s still muddy? What will you tackle next?)

  • Make this study time active and meaningful. For example, make concept maps, practice different problem types (without looking at the example problems), formulate questions, and dig deeper on anything that’s still muddy.

  • Take breaks at least every hour and keep track of how you’re doing. 

Use Resources

Just because you’re working remotely doesn’t mean you have to do it alone.

CAS Resources


Campus Resources




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