Schools and colleges moving classes to the Internet
Suspension of classes for a period of at least two weeks means a part-time break for students and teachers. However, majority of schools and Higher Education Institutions (HEI)
won’t pause their teaching activities, instead they will move their classes to the Internet and online-learning.
In order to protect its students from the adverse effects of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), IBC-M college complied to government’s decision to shut down all education institutions, and therefore has suspended all teaching activities in its premises, exclusively starting from Friday, 13 th of March 2020.
In order to fill the education gap during epidemic, IBC-M top management decided to move all teaching activities online, to the modern e-learning platform called BlueJeans. BlueJeans is a tool for continuous learning, effective online communication and collaboration, with minimum technical requirements, meaning that our students don’t need anything but their personal computers or tablets in order to use it. IBC-M wants to make it accessible and affordable for all of its students, therefore it made the use of this e-learning platform and its tools free of charge for every student. IBC-M lecturers and management will be available online throughout this
difficult period, in order to address all concerns and questions students may have.
What is Distance learning (e-learning)?
Due to the rapid change in all aspects of human life, especially in the way we utilize technologies and communicate, there was a need for fast and timely mean of education that would be widely
available. Distance learning can be defined as the use of information and communication technologies for the purpose of knowledge transfer, regardless of the time and place of students and their teachers.
Beside efficient knowledge transfer and effective time management, another advantage of e- learning is a wide availability or a possibility for large number of students to participate from the comfort of their homes, at the same time.
Nevertheless, there are some “old-school” teachers who consider e-learning being less efficient than the traditional one, as it depends of many technology factors such as availability of internet connection, continuous electricity supply or somewhat decent knowledge of information technologies. Those teachers also say that other disadvantages of e-learning are lack of feedback or lack of motivation on the students’ part.
How to motivate students to learn from home?
Motivating students to attend e-lessons from home is not a mission impossible, and it should be based on the principle that learning is not a punishment but rather a way to make yourself a better, educated individual, through interaction with teachers and your fellow students. Therefore, social interaction must be at the core of every form of education, including e-learning. In addition, teachers should take full advantage of the adaptive methods when tailoring teaching materials to the individual needs and progress – because this makes learning a lot more interesting and effective, thus motivating for every student.
Best strategies for successful e-learning
Create a classroom-like atmosphere
What you need in front of you when studying online are just your computer, a pen and a paper, nothing else. And that’s it. This is exactly what you have back at your college desk, therefore create the same atmosphere at home. Nothing else. No cups of coffee, no cookies, no snacks, just your computer and your thirst for education. Consider learning a serious thing and don’t let side things distract you. Create a classroom-like atmosphere.
When you set your goals on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis, and when you manage to reach them regularly, then success is simply inevitable. Write down your long-term and your short- term goals and how you plan to meet them. The best strategy is to write them down in your notebook and then tick whenever a goal has been reached. This way you will make yourself much more satisfied and motivated to work and learn. Also, one should be good to herself/himself and occasionally reward yourself when reaching a goal. Think of something symbolic like, buying yourself those shoes that you’ve noticed while window shopping the other day or taking your significant other to a nice dinner in some fancy restaurant.
Indulge your imagination
Think of the benefits of learning and how one day you might do what you love and live well of it. Just imagine yourself being a respectful staff member of some big company, doing well financially and shaping your future in best possible manner. Or maybe you have always wanted to be independent and work remotely, from home, making good money, scheduling your own working hours. That is a possibility as well. But these scenarios are plausible only if you take the matter in your own hands and try giving your best and take learning seriously.
As soon as the e-classes for that day are over, get some 10-minutes break, then sit down and do some research on the topics covered during classes. Don’t think of your Instagram or Facebook accounts, don’t think whether the coronavirus would exterminate the human population (because it certainly won’t), simply sit down and practice lessons learned, try to challenge yourself and learn something new every day. Set yourself some task related to topics covered that day and try solve it, be curious about staff you learn daily and life in general. Understand online learning as a kind of sport that brings good and long-term rewards. Also, if you want to improve your learning methodology consult your teachers on how to study. Remember that your teachers were once students with all fears and doubts just like yours, so do not hesitate to ask them how can you improve your learning methodology.
Also, have this in mind:
- Plan your daily activities and schedule your learning-time.
- Study each day at the scheduled time.
- When you study, do it from your desk (not from your sofa) because it maintains alertness.
- Make a calm learning environment without external distractions (phone calls, noise from theoutside.)
- Have your workspace or corner well-lit and properly ventilated.
- Make a study plan: what you will study and in what order.