Time Management Tips for Self-Paced Online Courses
How many times have you signed up for a free or paid course only to forget about it and NEVER complete it? If you relate, keep reading.
Online courses come in all forms. You have custom courses offered by small business and entrepreneurs, subscription learning websites like Skillshare, and then you have online courses offered by colleges and university.
This article is geared towards people who are taking self-paced courses offered by entrepreneurs and subscription course websites. These are the courses often that are forgotten about because no one is holding you accountable. No teacher is wondering where you are or providing you a grade at the end of class.
So how do you stay motivated and treat it as if you need a passing grade?
Here are a few tips:
Commit to Taking the Course
If you’re going to sign up for a course really ask yourself if you have the time or capacity to take it. Ask
Commit right now to take the course within the next 30 days if it is something you think will help you in some form or fashion. If you’re subscribed to a learning site, commit to taking at least two classes a month. C
Ok, if you’ve made the commitment let’s go to the next step.
Block Out Time
Now it’s time to look at your current schedule. When do you have time to sit and watch an online course. Remember everything is mobile now, you can watch a course on your phone or tablet, so you don’t have to be at home. Does the course require you to watch a video? If not, can you listen to it during your morning commute?
Figure out when you have blocks of time available to dedicate to the class. Block these times out on your calendar as “Learning Time.”
Create a Schedule
Now that you know what times every week you have open it’s time to create a schedule for specific courses.
Commit to completing your course by a specific date. Look at the length of the course. If it’s a long course figure out realistically how many hours you can commit to it a week (look at what you’ve set aside as “Learning Time.” Once you know that number come up with a realistic date to complete it. If it’s a course that has weekly check-ins with the online instructor commit to showing up and interacting in the private FB group, if applicable.
If it’s a short course (i.e., 20 min or an hour), commit to doing it on a specific date. Add it to your calendar and treat it as if it’s a meeting or appointment you cannot miss. Have a day and time weekly that you will take a new course if you’re subscribed to something like Skillshare. TIP: bookmark the classes you like so you’re not trying to figure out what you’re going to take next.
Is your home life too hectic to really commit to 30 minutes to an hour of learning? Go to a coffee shop, library, or your favorite museum with your phone/tablet and earpiece and take the course.
The beauty of technology is you can access information anywhere! Find a favorite learning spot and go take your course!
Give Yourself a Reward
Oh, how we love rewards. Tell yourself you can’t have something (i.e., your favorite latte) until you complete that course you’ve been meaning to do. Once you finish it treat yourself.
Sometimes we have to trick ourselves into getting things done. Figure out what will help keep you motivated.
Now start learning!
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