One of the most important factors in finding an academic-life balance is time. We have schedules for other parts of our lives, so thinking about your online learning experience as something that requires scheduling will really help you manage the work. And don’t forget that scheduling in your online learning time doesn’t mean that you need to do it in one block each week…spread it out to give you time to get through the content, to engage with the content and your peers, and to prepare any upcoming submissions. When you break up the weeks or topics into smaller chunks, it will be easier to manage your time. And remember to always take time for yourself – this allows you to relax and recharge your mind.
I design my courses to be as flexible as students need it to be. I create a Learning Cycle (see the description from the syllabus below) which is a suggested weekly schedule for you to keep up with the course. I send out weekly announcements to draw your attention to necessary information and keep on pace with the topics. I am also available in various ways to discuss any issues/address any concerns you may have. Additionally, I am very keen on providing each of you with the most up to date feedback on your learning experience so please note the deadlines for assessed elements in the course.
Learning Cycle Example
Our course runs throughout the week Monday-Friday. I have created a learning cycle for you to follow throughout the week to help you manage the workload in the course. If you are a part-time student/work during the days, I highly recommend you complete the readings by/on Monday and try to post your responses to the discussion earlier in the week so that you are actively participating.
- Monday: Read the resources for Week X. If you are a moderator for the week, post moderator questions in Week X folder by Monday at midnight.
- YouTube Webinar videos these are all available in advance and will run about 15min. You can watch this at your own time, but I recommend it be viewed before beginning the discussions.
- Post executive summary note – if you were a discussion moderator in the previous week, post the discussion summary note in your discussion folder by the following Monday at midnight.
- Tuesday-Friday: Engage in student-moderated discussion on Pepper (through Quercus)
- Weekends: free to play and spend time doing something that invigorates you
N.B. If you are a part-time student/work during the days, I highly recommend you complete the readings by/on Monday and try to post your responses to the discussion earlier in the week so that you are actively participating. If you think of this course as part of your academic work and schedule it into your calendar, then you have time carved out a few days of the week (~45min a couple of days for the online discussion, totalling ~2 hours) where you know you can sit down and participate in the discussions.