Studying online offers a great range of benefits. You’ll study flexibly, fitting your work around current commitments, and you’ll learn from real estate industry experts not necessarily based in your region. But how can you get the most out of your online course?
Read Orientation Materials
If your course provides you with a preparation guide or orientation materials, be sure to read them carefully. Knowing how your course works and is structured will save you time in the long run. Being familiar with your assignment deadlines, where to find library resources and what computer software you need to have in place will give you a head start from day one.
Get Tech Support
You don’t want the technical side of things to disrupt your learning on an online course. Attend available orientation sessions and if you have any questions, either before or during the course, be sure to contact tech support. The tech team can talk you through any issues and allow you to focus on the important stuff.
Refresh your Academic Skills
Inevitably, you’ll be doing a lot of reading and writing on your online course. Lectures are likely to take the form of reading assignments rather than a live spoken session. Some people find it difficult to digest information they read on a computer screen. If this is you, make sure you have printing facilities so you can read on paper.
Writing skills are also key. In preparation for your course, brush up on essay structure and learn how your course leaders would like you to reference sources. Develop a shorthand to save time when taking notes and, if you’re not an expert already, refresh your skills on the word processing software you’ll be using so you can make the most of its capabilities.
Communicate with Coursemates
When you’re not getting to know your coursemates face to face it can be difficult to strike up the usual rapport. However, this communication with your peers is great for getting support and different perspectives that could help you in your learning. Be sure to make the effort to talk and join course forums to share ideas with classmates. Live group chat with a tutor is also sometimes an option. Don’t let these opportunities pass you by.
Seek Help from Tutors
If you do need extra help from your tutor, you don’t have to rely on the group sessions to ask questions. Email your tutor directly or, if possible, set up a Skype meeting. Your tutors can give you guidance on how to improve your grades, where to find resources and can clarify any feedback they have given on your work.
Manage your Time Effectively
While online courses offer great flexibility, it’s important to remember that there are still deadlines to meet and you need great self-discipline to succeed. Coursework can be fitted in around your usual day to day life, but you need to set aside some time every week in order to make progress. Your orientation material should give you an idea of how much time is needed for the course. Err on the side of caution to begin with and allocate a little more time than is advised, so if you have any problems you have enough time to resolve them and still meet deadlines.
An online course is a great way to learn about real estate and prepare yourself for a career in the industry. With the right approach and good preparation, you can be sure of reaping the most benefit from studying online.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
With a background in business administration and management, Tess Pajaron currently works at Open Colleges, Australia’s leading online educator. She likes to cover stories in careers and marketing.