T Nation

Online College Courses

I was thinking about taking some online courses this summer to limit the load come next fall. Anyone have any experience with these internet courses? How does the teaching part of the course actually work? The classes I would be taking in the summer session would be the mandatory ones I have to take that have nothing to do with my major. I would make an appointment to see a counselor but unfortunately they can’t “squeeze me in” for another two weeks.

Last semester I took two online classes along with other three regular classes.

The online classes were Geology, and Geology lab… don’t ask me why I did a lab online…it was retarded, I had to purchase a kit with a bunch of rocks… haha I looked very cool playing with my rocks in my room.

As far as the teaching goes, you have to read the book, make sure you have a strict study ethic, or you are gonna get ripped a new one. For the exams I had to go to an actual classroom, and take them there.

You teach yourself.

No different from regular classes.

Of course, professors whose careers depend on classroom attendance will swear otherwise.

The sole motivation to my classroom attendance is the fear of grade penalties.
I have never learned well listening to sombody yap; I write notes solely to look busy and attentive - nodding my head occasionally on cue to half sentences penetrating my brain.

I learn successfully only by reading and writing - or by DOING (in the rare mechanical-oriented course).

If you learn well from a book and type well, you’ll be fine. Time constraints are often lighter. Just know online courses are heavily regarded as inferior and questionable, unless carried by a recognized university.

I have taken a couple of online courses. It’s all about discipline. Since you don’t have to attend class physically, it might be harder to be motivated to attend class online. But if it’s something that just requires test and quizzes, you should be fine. If it’s something that requires a subject being taught so you can understand (such as math), then it might be tougher.

Also, like the previous poster said, most online classes are not heavily favored and recognized, unless it is provided by an accredited university, so make sure you find out about the worthiness of the courses. Good luck.

I’ve had mixed experiences with online classes. I’ve taken 5 online classes: English 1 (or 101 or freshman English or whatever), College Algebra, Trig, Intro to Psychology, and Physics 1. Each one was a different experience.

In Algebra and Trig I was allowed to work ahead and finished the course in under a month, minus the exams, which were on site in a classroom.

English wasn’t hard, but I had my share of struggles. It was my first experience with an online class and I wasn’t prepared for the self discipline required. Since I wasn’t big on writing papers, I procrastinated, and that’s even worse in an online class. Also, there was no textbook, so I had to read all stories and passages online, which sucked at times.

Psychology was just an all around easy class and didn’t require too much effort. There was a textbook, so reading wasn’t an issue and the online work wasn’t too difficult.

Physics was the only online class I had to drop. I was just struggling to learn everything online. I needed someone there for me to ask questions and help me understand.

In all the above, except English, I had a live, classroom exam. The classes were all taken through a local community college in conjunction with a live classes taken separately.

There was a section of the school’s website that I would log into for my online classes. It was basically a messageboard with downloadable assignments. Physics and Trig were the only classes that required me to go to a separate website.

I think online classes are great, especially for general ed requirements and “easier” classes. No point boring yourself and wasting time sitting in a classroom when you can knock out the assignments in a fraction of the time. I also liked the idea of “going to class” on my own time. I’m a night person and did most of my online work between 1am and 4am.

It all really depends on you and the class. Can you do an online course? Will you get the work done on time? Can you learn the subject matter basically on your own?