In a study conducted last year on factors that affect retention in online learning, I came across some interesting information on student style. Through a collection of both quantitative and qualitative data, three personality styles came through: Outgoing learners, neutral learners and hands-off learners.
The first group, outgoing learners, were eager to take classes online and desired outcomes from the course that went above and beyond what was required. They made sure they had a clear sense of the program up front and completed orientation and advising prior to the term start.
Our next group is the neutral learner. Neutral learners only asked for help from students that they knew and not the professor. These students had indicated they would have preferred to study in a classroom, but due to personal constraints were taking courses online. Students did what was required of them, but participated minimally outside of any required efforts. They may or may not have completed orientation and advising prior to the start of classes.
Lastly, the hands-off learner. These students prefer to work at their own pace, do what was required of them and preferred to have minimal contact with other students.
Can you guess which student population was the most successful? Exactly! The outgoing learners.
I have long since advised students on being present. Regardless of the reason you are studying online, or on campus, be there! If you are investing in your education, get your money’s worth, engage with your fellow classmates and faculty, and expand your knowledge. Your classmate today could be a networking contact tomorrow!