Do You Know How to Learn in an Online Classroom? Linfield Adult Degree Program Students and Alumni Share Their Most Effective Techniques

If you’re new to online learning, you might be wondering how exactly you will learn an entire semester of material without meeting your professors or classmates face to face. Linfield College is here to help. Our new video, Online Learning Environment: From Anywhere, At Anytime, discusses best practices for learning online in students’ own words. Linfield-Online-Learning-EnvironmentThe Linfield students and graduates featured in the video were specifically recognized by their professors as demonstrating best practices in online learning. Now they are sharing their experiences with you to make your online experience as smooth as possible.

As the students reveal in the video, it’s normal to have reservations about learning online if you’ve never experienced it before. For example, before enrolling at Linfield to earn her RN to BSN degree, Kathie Attaway expected learning online would be isolating. She imagined her online classes would consist of “getting an assignment, completing it on my own, and then uploading it to some site.” Similarly, 3rd year marketing major Jennifer Rhafir, who returned to school to open up more opportunities for her growing family, found online learning intimidating at first. Thankfully, Linfield ADP students quickly discover that despite the technological delivery, our online programs retain the core elements of a traditional classroom – and offer some unique benefits.

Here are top techniques our students have found to be effective for learning in an online degree program:

  1. Practice time management
  2. Ask professors and classmates questions
  3. Participate in online discussions
  4. Build relationships with fellow students
  5. Apply what you’ve learned to your job or discussions with classmates

If these steps sound straightforward, that’s because they are – and the Linfield Adult Degree Program is designed for students to excel when they utilize these practices.

To have a plan toward graduation with no wasted steps, academic advisors help students plan their courses and find the ideal course load for balancing the demands of job, family, and school. If you’d like to learn more about mapping out an academic plan of courses that is a good fit for you, contact us at and we will refer you to an academic advisor.

Just like in a traditional classroom, the Linfield professors in the online classes are dedicated to and invested in students’ success. For example, in the video, Jennifer explains, “I learned how to reach out to my professors to find out exactly what was expected of me for each class. I also learned how important it was to reach out to my fellow classmates and use the discussion element of the online classes to further my ability to learn within the class format.”

Even though physical distance separates them, classmates still gather in group discussions, lend advice, and share successes. Students interact with one another through group discussions, which create a real sense of progressing together through the semester. Now a senior, Kathie found the online learning environment to be highly interactive throughout her time in the RN to BSN degree. She says, “I had no idea that there would be so much interaction not only with my professors but with my fellow students.” As Kathie discovered, online learning at Linfield can be highly collaborative and goes beyond receiving assignments and emailing in homework.

Our online learning format enables our adult degree program to equip students with particular strengths that are highly valued by many employers. Our students develop a marked sense of independence and resourcefulness. Jennifer says that online learning has made her a stronger learner. She adds, “I’m a stronger researcher, and I know that if I’m not comprehending something I have the tools to go out and find exactly what I’m looking for.”

Our alum Fred Van Drimmelen, who earned his management degree, now holds a position with Cisco Systems. He found the online classes conducive to participating while traveling on business, and reflected that this flexibility was necessary in order for him to stay on track for graduation. Fred says, “The phrase that you get out of the process what you put into the process is very true in the online learning environment. If you go into it wanting to absorb and learn, it is a very effective toolset.” At Linfield, we prepare you to absorb and learn online and from the entire world around you.

Linfield Adult Degree Program students and recent graduates who were recognized by their professors for demonstrating best practices in online learning in Spring/Summer 2013 are:

Kathie Attaway, Jennifer Rhafir, Fred Van Drimmelen, Brittany Karr, Olga Lebedev, Aaron Miles, Melissa Parker, Rachelle Rehberg, Tricia Taylor, and Derek Vinciquerra.