Reflections of Online Learning

We’ve made it! Despite the tests, the challenging homework, the million-and-one terms to know, we have made it to the end of not one, but two, AP classes. This class, as a combination of AP US Government and AP Comparative Politics, has truly challenged me in my senior year. The topics were vast and detailed. Most of the concepts were pretty new as well. Along with my other classes, I had a huge amount of work on my plate. But the real challenge in all of this: this crazy class was entirely online. How well did we learn the topic? How well will we do on the AP test? It all depends on the quality of studying.

What have I learned?
Besides the government and politics, I have learned a few life skills because of this class. I have learned to manage my time better than before. Because this online classwork is at your own pace, it is up to you, the student, to get your work in on time. If you don’t, there is no flesh-and-blood teacher to pester you every class period!  Over this last year, I have learned to balance my priorities. I have, unfortunately for my Government knowledge, mastered the skill of cramming…take it from me: this is not the way to study! I have also learned to communicate better. In an online class setting with very little direct communication, it is important to ask questions when you have them.

If you are considering enrolling in an online course, I have a bit of advice:

  1. Talk to former students. Ask about the class, the type of homework, their average study time. Ask about the teacher and the methods of teacher. Just ask questions. Every class will be different, so ask questions every time!
  2. Meet the teacher face to face. Skype, ichat, even video introductions will help you get started on a good note.
  3. If the class you will take is entirely different from any you’ve taken before, learn a little about the subject before you join. Even a short wikipedia article will give you more knowledge that you had before!
  4. Get to know the website. Wouldn’t it be a shame to miss an assignment or test because you couldn’t find it? Understanding the layout before hand gives you a hand up at the beginning of class (or time to ask questions if you don’t get it)

This class has been a great experience for me. I’ve met people across the country and learned more about our own government and other countries’. This class was fun and educational. Plus, it had the benefits of running on my schedule! If I was too busy one day to do homework, no problem! I had the option to organize my time as needed. If I understood a subject faster than my peers, I could complete those assignments, then watch a movie – there was no need to sit around in a classroom. If you want to find out more benefits of an online class, check out this site!


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