Easy Ways to Get A Head Start on Your Online College Course


Though online college courses are similar to traditional college courses, it can be helpful to take the time to pre-plan the workload. These tips for preparation aren’t very time-consuming and can significantly pay off come graduation.

Get Organized

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s important to take the time to plan for classes so that the workload doesn’t pile up. Depending on the course and one’s personal preferences, this may take the form of a physical calendar, reminders in a phone, or filling out a planner. It’s important to mark out major deadlines and due dates for the course so that they don’t come as a surprise. Contacting advisors for advice on workload and scheduling goes hand-in-hand with this step.

Set a Reading Schedule

Because there’s no formal task to submit, it’s not uncommon to put less emphasis on reading assignments. However, this can quickly lead to falling behind on the coursework and having to cram weeks of reading into a short period of time. Before the online college courses start, it can help to plan out a week-by-week reading schedule so that the end of the semester isn’t overwhelming.

Learn The System Infrastructure

When taking online college courses for the first time, it’s important to set aside time to learn the system first, especially with more technical courses. This way when the course begins, it’s easier to navigate how to view, upload, and submit assignments. There’s nothing worse than having technical issues mere hours before an assignment is due. Taking the time to learn the system infrastructure before the course begins will prevent late assignments.

Take a Sneak-Peek at the Textbook

The last thing anyone wants to do is read a textbook in their spare time, but this can help considerably in the long run. By simply looking over the table of contents or reading the introductions of chapters, it can be easy to become familiar with the subject matter before the online college course begins. It’s a good way to budget time so that when the topics do come up, there’s already a baseline of knowledge and familiarity with the topic to build on.