Learning “online” is all the rage these days. More and more distance education courses (via the Internet, video, interactive TV, or independent study) are available to students the world over. The real question is-how will a distance education course fit your circumstances and lifestyle? A successful distance learner needs certain skills, most importantly, a high degree of discipline and motivation. The self-assessment below will give you an indication of whether or not this type of learning experience is for you.
Circle the answer that best describes you
1. My motivation for taking a distance delivered course is:
A. High – I need it immediately for my degree, job advancement or other important reason.
B. Moderate – I could take it later or I can substitute another course.
C. Low – It’s personal interest, it could be postponed.
2. Having face-to-face interaction with my instructors and fellow students is:
A. Not particularly necessary to me.
B. Somewhat important to me.
C. Very important to me.
3. I would classify myself as someone who:
A. Often gets things done ahead of time.
B. Needs reminding to get things done on time.
C. Puts things off until the last minute.
4. Classroom discussion is:
A. Rarely helpful to me.
B. Sometimes helpful to me.
C. Almost always helpful to me.
5. When an instructor hands out directions for an assignment, I prefer:
A. Figuring out the instructions myself.
B. Trying to follow the directions on my own, then asking for help as needed.
C. Having the instructions explained to me.
6. I need faculty comments on my assignments:
A. Within a few weeks, so I can review what I did.
B. Within a few days, or I forget what I did.
C. Right away, or I get very frustrated.
7. Considering my professional and personal schedule, the amount of time I have to work on a distance education course is:
A. More than enough for a campus class or a distance education course.
B. The same as for a class on campus.
C. Less than for a class on campus.
8. When I am asked to use computers, voicemail, or other technologies new to me:
A. I look forward to learning new skills.
B. I feel apprehensive, but try it anyway.
C. I put it off and try to avoid it.
9. As a reader, I would classify myself as:
A. Good – I usually understand the text without help.
B. Average – I sometimes need help to understand the text.
C. Below average – I frequently need help understanding text.
10. If I have to go to an approved testing center to take exams orcomplete work:
A. I can go frequently.
B. I may miss some exam deadlines if the approved testing center is not open evenings and weekends.
C. I will have difficulty getting to the approved testing center, even in the evenings and on weekends.
11. If asked to use computers I:
A. Have access to a relatively good computer and know how to use it
B. Have access to a relatively good computer, but am not too familiar with it.
C. Do not have access to a computer.
Scoring: Add 3 points for each “A,” 2 points for each “B” and 1 point for each “C”
If you scored 20 or over
Distance education course is a real possibility for you.
If you scored between 11-20
Distance education courses may work for you but you will need to make a few adjustments in your schedule and study habits to succeed.
If you scored 10 or less
Distance education courses may not currently be the best alternative for you; talk to your counselor.