Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Preparing for an 8-Week course

I’m taking my first eight-week long course this semester. This got me thinking about how it might be different from the sixteen-week format I am more used to. Succeeding in an online course always requires good management of time. I must carefully balance school, work, and personal responsibilities. When the online class is an eight week or six week course, I am thinking that managing these elements will become much more critical.

Since an online sixteen week course should take three hours of coursework per credit each week, an Eight-week online course should take six hours of coursework per credit each week. For a three credit class, that works out to as much as an 18-hour a week part time job! Because of this, I decided to take only one class at a time until I see how I can integrate this workload with my work and social schedule.

I expect that the deadlines will also come much faster. Just eight days into my course, I will already be at the refund deadline, forcing me to decide whether or not I can handle the workload and get the grade I want or to drop the course and try the longer format in the Fall.

Because of this, I’m planning on checking into the course as early as possible and completing the first assignment quickly. I’ll also need to look over the assignments and syllabus and see if I have any questions. Usually, I think for two or three days before I email my instructor, but with this class, I expect that if I have questions, I’ll need to write the professor immediately—procrastinating even a few days would probably not be a good idea.

I’m really looking forward to the pleasant feel completing the course more quickly. I’ll get to feel the sense of accomplishment which keeps me motivated that much faster. I’m also telling myself I can deal with almost any schedule for two months—so it actually feels much more flexible than the traditional four-month courses. I’ll let you know if my opinion changes once the course actually starts.

So how many of you have already taken a six or eight week course? Do you have any advice for me? I would love to know a little more about what to expect!

1 comment:

  1. I am currently taking an 8 week course, it is pretty intense taking it with two other classes. So I start my week of with my 8 week class. Once wednesday rolls around I need a break, so I do my other two classes the next day or two. As friday comes around I finish up all the remaining work that I was not able to finish during the week. Then I get a little play time on the weekends, which is a must! Seems to be working pretty well for me, but see what works best for you!