Four Tips for Success in Online Degree Programs

Four Tips for Success in Online Degree Programs
  • Opening Intro -

    Online degree programs can offer students a more flexible education experience.

    Online programs allow you to learn at your own pace, balance your professional career with your coursework, and study wherever you want.


But these benefits can allow some students to become complacent. Here are four tips that will prevent you from falling behind in your online degree program:

Technology Requirements

One thing to keep in mind before you begin an online degree program are the technology requirements of your program. The most crucial requirement for online education is reliable internet access. Since all of your coursework is online, it is important to maintain a consistent internet connection. If you are not able to access the internet at home, it is recommended you use reputable public resources to access the internet, such as libraries.

Making sure that you have an internet browser that is supported by your online coursework is another requirement to be mindful of. Often times, a specific program or web app used by your program will not be compatible with certain browsers. Some of the most common browsers are:

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer
  • Microsoft Edge
  • Google Chrome
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Apple Safari

Online schools will also usually require you to have access to a computer with the Windows 7, Mac OS X, or higher operating system in order to ensure that the software used in the course is compatible with your computer. Smartphones and tablets can be a useful tool to stay connected in your online class, but it is recommended to avoid them as the primary access to your coursework. Mobile operating systems are often not compatible with certain desktop applications that will be used for your coursework.

Time Management

In order to manage your time effectively, it may be useful to create a schedule around your other commitments in order to set time aside to complete coursework or study. Setting time aside from your other commitments will prevent you from falling behind, which can happen quickly in an online course. It can also be useful to plan ahead. Looking at your syllabus and determining what is to be completed over the coming weeks can help you develop a roadmap to manage your time and make sure that you do not miss any assignments.


Having a consistent and quiet workspace can help you to stay focused and work more efficiently. The key is to find a space that allows you to be comfortable but also allows you to avoid distractions and work efficiently. Keeping your space clean and organized can also help you to stay focused. It is recommended to keep your workspace and personal space separate. Some examples of workspaces that might help your productivity are:

  • Home office or desk space
  • Libraries
  • Coffee shops

Utilize University Resources

Many online degree programs offer the same resources to their online students as their on-campus students. These resources were created in order to help you succeed, so it would be wise to take advantage of them. Some examples of common resources that universities offer are:

  • Online Libraries –
    Often times, students will have access to their school’s online library. These often will have numerous online databases and resources available for students.
  • Career Services –
    Universities have resources available to assist students with their careers.
  • Tech Support –
    Online schools have dedicated personnel that are available to help with any tech problems you are having. This can be especially useful for online students.
  • Professors –
    Students often forget that their professors can be a valuable resource. With online degree programs, professors are often only an email away.

Hopefully, these tips will help you become more successful in your online coursework. While an online degree can offer much more flexibility than an on-campus program, there is more of an opportunity for complacency. It is important that you use these techniques in order to stay on top of your work.

College Financing reference:

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