Design Your E-Learning Schedule For Optimal Benefits
E-learning offers many advantages over the traditional model of learning, such as flexibility and cost-efficiency. These advantages are the reason that it is becoming more and more popular around the world. However, e-learning does come with some disadvantages as well. One of the biggest disadvantages associated with e-learning is the lack of discipline. The reason for this is that in the traditional model of learning, courses are structured for us by our teachers who also regularly carry out assessments of our progress. Bad performance of assessments can lead to disciplinary measures. This discipline causes students to stay motivated.
However, since we are so used to an external authority imposing discipline on us, this means that we find it difficult to stay disciplined and motivated when the pace of studying is up to us, as is the case in e-learning. Many of the e-learning courses available online are structured by their creators. However, most of them offer a very flexible schedule and allow the learners to learn at their own pace. Furthermore, some of them don’t have assessments and even the ones which can’t enforce any disciplinary measures in case of bad performance. All this means that learners have to rely on their own self-discipline which, judging from how many people never finish the e-learning courses they start, is one area where a lot of people are lacking.
Ultimately, self-discipline like other skills is learned with time and practice. Thankfully, there are some techniques you can adopt to help with your motivation and discipline. One of the most important ones is designing a good learning schedule.
Set Daily or Weekly Objectives
The first part of designing a good learning schedule is breaking down your course into daily or weekly objectives. Ideally, the objectives should be daily as they can then become part of your daily habit and so help you stick to the schedule. However, if you are somehow unable to commit yourself to daily objectives, then weekly objectives would also do the job. The point is to set a series of objectives that you achieve at regular intervals of time.
Setting these objectives will help you stay motivated, as focusing on the immediate next objective is easier than focusing on the course as a whole.
Design Assessments for Yourself
Some online courses come with assessments through which you can judge your own performance. However, many don’t have that option. In that case, you should design your own assessments to continuously judge your performance and test the knowledge you have gained.
There are a number of different ways that you can do this. You can design self-assessments if you are learning by yourself. Alternatively, you can ask a friend or family member for help and ask them to assess you through tests and quizzes. These assessments can be weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly. The important thing is for these assessments to be regular rather than sporadic.
Assessments will enable you to know how much you have really learned from your course and how much of that knowledge you are retaining. Secondly, they will also motivate you to pay attention to the course itself and focus on learning rather than just skimming through the course.
Set Disciplinary Measures
While objectives and assessments can help you stay motivated, they are often inadequate. This is especially the case for learners who are beginners to e-learning and/or struggle with self-discipline. Therefore, in order to make sure that you follow your objectives and take your assessments seriously, you might want to set disciplinary measures for yourself in case you fail to meet an objective or perform badly in an assessment.
This can be done in a number of different ways. You can commit yourself to pay a certain amount in charity. You can do certain physical activities, such as running laps or doing push-ups (like they sometimes make you do in school). If you have someone to help you with assessments, you can even make bets with them on whether you will perform well or not.
These disciplinary measures will function similarly to the disciplinary measures imposed on students by educational institutes. The desire to avoid these measures creates a strong motivation among students to pay attention to their studies and perform well on their assessments. There is no reason why you can’t replicate these disciplinary measures by your own choice in e-learning.
As mentioned above, e-learning comes with both advantages and disadvantages. If you are making use of e-learning, then it is obvious because you are aware of the advantages. However, at the same time, it is also important to identify the disadvantages. Once you have identified them, you should adopt measures to make sure that those disadvantages don’t hinder your learning process. In this way, you will be able to gain maximum benefit from e-learning.