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Advice from the Graduates: Tips for Excelling in Online Classes

The onset of Covid-19 has resulted in a major shift of in-person classes to online learning in the United States. With the Fall 2020 semester approaching, and not much of a change with regards to increasing rates of infection, online classes is beginning to look like the new normal. We reached out to past students to share tips for excelling in online classes.

1. You can't fake it in an online class. If you don't do the readings, for instance, and then attempt to contribute to the discussion board posts, it is going to be pretty obvious you did not do the reading. It also takes a lot of self-discipline to go through and do the work. I always wrote down deadlines so I knew what I had to do by - Kimberly Rehak , MPPM, University of Pittsburgh, '20.

2. I think people tend to underestimate the time commitment to online classes. Make sure to put the same amount of time as if you were going to class - Mariam Sanogo , MBA, Temple University, '19.

3. Take advantage of all the help you can get. Reach out to the Professor or Teaching Assistant if you have any questions , either by phone, email or via a video chat meeting. Also, have a good source of high speed internet, a stable functional device - laptop, tablet or desktop - Maame Dufie Owusu , JD, University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Law, '19.

4. Your 'A game' needs to be up since you will not be getting in-person reminders of assignments due - Kayleigh Gaborek , M.Ed, University of Pittsburgh, '18.

5. Time management is a critical key to the success of a student who enrolls in an online class. Professors tend to understand the constraints that often comes with online learning and are more lenient with students who appear to make the effort. If you do not understand a particular assignment, do not wait and email the professor a day before the due date for clarification! Be more proactive! - Kay Sarpong, MSW, University of Pittsburgh, '18.

Do you have any other tips to give students taking an online class for the first time? Leave a message in the comment box.


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