Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) bring together huge numbers of individuals from around the world to learn through video tutorials, activities and discussions.
Part of the advantages of an online course includes it’s openness; Participants of an online course are not restricted to a particular location, time or medium to take the course. These courses are usually very cheap if not free and are available to anyone regardless of their level of education, experience or even software they have access to.
However, the massive size of these MOOC can be overwhelming thereby making it difficult to get their desired results. The major problem can also be attributed to self-motivation thereby resulting in a lot of participants not completing their online course.
This article will give you guidelines as to how to stay on track and ensure you complete your online course.
Setting personal goals
Setting your own goals with regards to the training can help you go a long way to completing your online courses. Why am I doing this? What are my interests? Which courses here will help me in my career? Are questions you should ask yourself before taking up the course. Then you can use these goals to guide you and you can also keep a record of you achieve them.
Make a commitment
Commitment to a cause actually helps one to achieve the goals earmarked. It’s really important to commit a certain number of hours, minutes per week to an online course. Because of the low restriction to time for MOOC, people tend to take lessons at any time, haphazardly without any structure. It can help if you set aside specific times for example, you may want to spend 15 minutes every other day taking part in discussions, half an hour each week reading articles that particularly interest you, and an hour attending a live session or watching the recording. The trick here is to study ‘little and often’ throughout the week instead of leaving everything for one mammoth session. If you do fall behind one week, you can always pick things up with a new topic the following week and return to any topics you missed, but it’s always best to spread out your learning.
Have a consistent work space
One thing online and in-class courses have in common is that students still need a place to study or complete assignments, whether that’s at a coffee shop, the school library, or at home. Wherever students choose to study and complete assignments, they should make it a consistent location that’s free of outside interference. You need a place to study that’s quiet for a time that’s set aside where you can focus on your work without distractions.
Become comfortable with the technology
Familiarize yourself with the class platform. It can be very frustrating when you have an assignment deadline quickly approaching and being unable to easily navigate the site. Your online class will most likely be accessed through your personal computer or laptop. It is recommended you take some time to become acquainted with the platform and utilize any orientation materials prior to class. Having a reliable internet connection and operating system is also crucial to staying on top of your work.
Get to know people and help them get to know you
One of the best ways to stay motivated and achieve your personal learning objectives is to connect with other learners on your MOOC. Start by making sure people can find you. Upload a friendly profile picture, write a brief and interesting text to go with it and, if you have one, add a link to your Facebook group, Twitter handle or blog. Next, meet like-minded participants by ‘liking’ or replying to posts that interest you, starting your own discussions, or helping out when someone has questions about a new concept. Find out more about the people involved in each discussion and connect with them on or off the MOOC platform. And remember to stay ACTIVE
MOOC offer a rich, stimulating and social learning experience that can support your personal and professional development. To get the most out of them, you need to make them relevant to you by setting clear goals, and then be realistic about how and when you’ll achieve them. Crucial to this is connecting with people who share the same learning goals as you, collecting and sharing knowledge with them, and finding out more about how the platform can support you.
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