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Can You take Your College Courses Online?

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Not all colleges and universities today offer online course credit. However, many accept transferred community college course credit, and other colleges and universities are integrating online and in-class modules. If you have the opportunity to opt for online work, here are some tips for getting the most out of your classes.

First and foremost, you need to be self-disciplined. Read the course work that the online professor assigns. Set out a ?time budget? to do the class work. Otherwise, you'll find it very difficult to avoid ?cramming? before tests and quizzes. If your schedule constantly gets thrown off track, speak to a guidance counselor about how to allocate your time properly. Especially if you are studying outside the context of high school for the first time, the flexibility and openness of online learning can be daunting and extremely difficult to manage.

In addition, remember that online courses require computer based learning, lots of typing, and interpretation of material without the assistance of classmates. You may want to print out the course work for handy reference (and to take a break from staring at your monitor). In addition, back up all of your files on an independent server or a flash drive/CD-ROM.

If you're taking online courses concomitantly with college and university classes, you'll be socially encouraged to pay more attention to your ?real world? classes. But don't let your online credits fall by the wayside. Set goals and deadlines for getting readings done and materials faxed or emailed to your instructor.

One of the great benefits to learning online is that the process prepares you for adult time management scenarios. By becoming a master of your own schedule, you'll improve your capacity to navigate difficult business situations and complex post-grad political scenarios.

Especially if you live within the college and university system, you should be able to find fellow ?classmates? to assist with problem sets and/or papers. Develop a working group to meet once a week to digest the material. Arrange face to face meetings between you and your instructor. Use college and university resources to reduce the psychological burden of studying ?alone,? and explore your financial aid and scholarship options in full -- you should be entitled to significant discounts on your distance learning.

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