Year after year, the number of online courses offered by providers has been increasing exponentially, and established educational institutions are now muscling in on the market. The options are many: extension courses, undergraduate, MBAs, post-graduate specializations, corporate training and, of course, online English courses.
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- 1. Remember you will be in charge of your success
- 2. Get to know the platform
- 3. Organise an adequate study space
- 4. Set achievable goals
- 5. Maintain a routine
- 6. Keep in touch with you teacher/tutor
- 7. Clarify any doubts, ask any questions
- 8. Do not underestimate the side content
- 9. Avoid building a backlog
- 10. Do not limit yourself to the skills you favour
How to make the most out of your E2 test prep package or any other online course:
1. Remember you will be in charge of your success
The profile of the average online course taker is very different from that of a traditional, classroom attendee. In remote learning, it is easy to become a passive agent, so a change of mentality is needed.
When it comes to traditional, face-to-face corporate English courses, the student is used to receiving all of the content from the teacher. With the online version, a change of posture is required. All of the content is already there, so you need to be proactive and go out in search of the information you need.
One of the most important things for the online student is to understand that the person behind your success (or failure) and overall positive (or negative) outcomes is the learner himself. The learner is the protagonist and has to take hold of the teaching reins.
2. Get to know the platform
A common mistake that hinders many distance learning students, leading to low rates of retention, is the lack of familiarity with the study platform.
Before you begin your studies, invest some time and effort in exploring the platform. Understand all of the features it offers, watch the videos provided exactly for this purpose and learn how to navigate through all of its learning channels.
3. Organise an adequate study space
It is not worth lying in bed with a laptop to do your course just because you can. It would be equally inappropriate to think you could study well on the bus or in a busy café. Preparing a suitable learning environment to study for online English courses is absolutely key. This environment must be free of excessive noise and interruptions, including colleagues, spouses, children and pets.
4. Set achievable goals
As the central player in your distance learning course, you are responsible for dictating the pace of study. However, that does not mean you can speed things up to the point where you can finish six modules in a single month. Tempting though this may be, it is a trap to be avoided, especially in more automated online English courses.
You end up associating the fact that you have the platform available at any time with the thought that the more you do, the faster it will end.
5. Maintain a routine
Organize your schedule to fit in a few hours of study per week. Make a schedule and stick to it. Time flexibility is a huge benefit of distance learning, but it can turn into a headache for the ill-disciplined student. Just because it is online, that doesn’t mean you can leave it all to chance.
6. Keep in touch with you teacher/tutor
A human interface with the online platform is essential. Having ongoing, close contact with the teacher or tutor of the course means you will get the most appropriate guidance for your studies. Take advantage of this connection to ensure the best possible outcome from your online learning experience.
7. Clarify any doubts, ask any questions
Do not let the distance between you and the school make you shy. If you are in doubt about any aspect of your course, let the course provider know about it. “The mantra is that there is ‘no such thing as a stupid question’, so you have got nothing to lose by getting in touch,” says Ricardo. If the course provider seems less than happy to help, or makes it difficult to contact them, perhaps it is time to think about a new course provider.
8. Do not underestimate the side content
In addition to their main offerings, most online English courses allow you to access complementary activities and material.
Speaking of complementary activities, E2 English provides free grammar, vocabulary & pronunciation videos like the one below. You can also do a free placement test here.
9. Avoid building a backlog
The unexpected can and will happen, and no student is immune from falling behind in their study schedule from time to time.
10. Do not limit yourself to the skills you favour
As much as you may want to, you cannot survive on meat alone: eventually, you have to eat some fruit and veg. Your study schedule is a balanced diet for your learning skills, and you cannot leave anything aside.
As is the case with any self-directed study, if you want to get the most out of your online English course, you have to be willing to put in the time and effort to see results!
Do you have any tips for making the most of online English courses? Feel free to comment and let us know!
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