Some problems include incompatible technology, continual course learning management system (LMS) problems, e-mail problems, or bewildering directions and assignments. Being a free essay writer, I can say that regardless of the situation, there are many things you can do to overcome this less than happy experience and turn it into a positive outcome.

Options for Developing Solutions: Overcoming Technical Problems

Problems arise every day in life and this includes any distance learning course in which you are enrolled. The following offers options for developing solutions and online learning skills to solve problems encountered with an internet-based course before it reaches the nightmare level.

Seek Solutions, Not Blame – it is very easy to blame others for problems encountered; however, this will not help in seeking solutions to the problem. As more and more schools venture further into the world of distance learning, there are inevitable growing pains. The best approach is to be part of the solution and not part of the problem.

Computer and Software Compatibility – contact the instructional technology department of the school to ensure your computer and software are compatible with course requirements. Often the school has free software suited for connecting with their e-mail and course learning management system.

Overcoming Firewalls – completing part or all of a course using a computer protected with a firewall may cause other technical issues. Computer or computer network system firewalls tend to block access to some course LMS (examples include Blackboard, WebCT, Moodle, or Angel) other online resources. If this happens you need to change the settings on your computer’s firewall system or seek access to a course LMS through your computer systems technology coordinator.

Contact Course Instructor – technical problems may only be experienced by you and not other students enrolled in the course. Also, the instructor may not even be aware of the problems you are encountering. If the problems are beyond the instructor’s control, then seek alternative and acceptable solutions to complete course requirements.

Contingency Plan – essential for solving problems related to this and any difficult situation. Alternatives to continuing with an online course plagued with problems are dropping the course and picking up another course. If beyond drop/add date, then withdraw from the course and select another course that begins during mid-semester or between semesters. This action may be necessary to ensure eligibility for student loans and grants.

Create a Learning Community: Sharing Resources, Solving Problems, and Study Groups

Additional ways to solve problems associated with an online course is to create a learning community among students in the class. The following are ways to set up an online learning group.

Communicate with Other Students – this strategy provides the opportunity to share ideas and solutions for resolving issues related to the course. This can be accomplished using several methods.

  • E-mail – addresses obtained from course resources such as a listserv, forum, or instructor. Ensure your instructor and other students’ e-mail addresses are whitelisted (add their e-mails to your address book) in your e-mail system. If not, their e-mails may be viewed as spam and blocked.
  • Online Chat – using services such as Facebook, Skype, eBuddy, Twitter, Plurk, Yahoo Messenger, and MSN Messenger.
  • Google Docs – students can create and share an online document that allows multiple users to communicate with each other at the same time for sharing resources and asking questions.

Create an Online Study Group – this strategy provides an opportunity to form support groups to ask questions, share resources, share drafts, collaborate, and resolve technology or confusing issues related to course requirements. You can use any of the methods discussed above for study group communication.

Instructional Material Problems: Online Resources, Texts, and Readings

Sometimes attempting to complete an online course without the latest instructional materials, such as the current textbook edition, makes it difficult at best to succeed in a course. Successful adult learners solve problems and other issues related to accessing instructional materials using the following approaches.

Read and Scrutinize the Course Syllabus – as with traditional courses, online courses are guided by a syllabus. Do not wait until the day classes start to access the syllabus to determine course requirements and expectations. Waiting until the first day is often a leading cause of panic and a sudden pronouncement – this is going to be a nightmare course. Reading, scrutinizing, and grasping what is expected before the first online class is paramount to success.

Course Announcements – pay attention to any announcements your online course instructor posts on the LMS or provides via e-mail. These often contain important solutions to technical problems, new links to online readings and resources, and clarifying answers to questions submitted by students. These announcements often mean the difference between a panic attack and remaining calm.

Create an Online Bookmarking Library – a common problem is keeping track of distance learning resources and readings when it’s time to prepare a paper, report, or presentation. This issue is resolved by using bookmarking resources you encounter on the web as you complete course assignments. Bookmarking services include services such as Delicious, Digg, Diigo, and Mixx.

These ten ways to survive a nightmare online learning course guide in overcoming and solving problems to avoid a disastrous outcome. It is important to be proactive, seek help from other students and the instructor, and prepare for online learning. Since distance learning is typically accomplished in isolation, some problems appear larger than they are and may unnecessarily cause a sense of panic, along with a course evolving into a nightmare.

About the author:

Bianca J. Ward is a professional essay writer online at EssayWriterFree where she provides people with qualitative works. Besides, she is a passionate photographer and traveler who has visited 52 countries all over the world. Bianca dreams about creating a photo exhibition to present her works to others.

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