Self Motivation and the Online Learner

Ask anyone who’s pursuing a college degree online and they will tell you that the work is rigorous, requires excellent time-management skills, and involves a significant amount of discipline.

Still, more than 6 million Americans take at least one college class online, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, and nearly 3 million of those go to college exclusively online.

That’s because, despite the substantial amount of motivation needed to be successful, online learning has numerous benefits. The convenience and flexibility allow you to study any time and just about anywhere you have an internet connection. This makes it an ideal solution for working adults and those with family obligations.

If you’re taking classes online and need a little help in the self-discipline department, keep reading. We’re highlighting several tips for staying motivated while you go to college online.

Turns out, Ford was right. Decades later, studies by Stanford University professor Albert Banduraand others established that students who believed in their own abilities were more successful academically than those who did not.

One of the best ways to develop an empowering mindset is to practice positive self-talk. The idea is to talk to yourself in confident, affirming ways. Psychology Today, NPR, and University of Pennsylvania all cite studies supporting the idea that positive thinking helps create success.

Any reputable online school will encourage students to communicate with faculty and provide several ways to do so, such as email, discussion boards, chat room office hours, and even text messaging (for some teachers).

Create a reasonable study schedule and stick to it. Look at your commitments at the onset of each week and determine your obligations for coursework/study time, work, and family for that week. Block off time to meet each obligation and schedule this time as appointments on your calendar, and then keep your appointments.

Class discussion boards, Facebook groups, and other online tools and resources help you connect with a community of like-minded online learners. You can share your common struggles, get new perspectives, and support each other.

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