Snap Language

Getting Smarter through Language

How to Become a More Effective Online Learner | Page 5

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Improve Your Communication Skills

If your course has an instructor or teacher, it is important to communicate with the instructor clearly so your experience runs smoothly.

Here are a some recommendations to improve communication:

  • Communicate issues as soon as possible. Do not wait until a small issue becomes a big problem. Instructors will be more receptive and flexible if you communicate difficulties or problems as they come up as opposed to when it is too late to solve them.
  • If you do not understand instructions or the course content, first try to figure it out on your own, then ask for clarification if you still have difficulties.
  • When communicating with the instructor, be concise but be clear. To be concise, leave out unnecessary information while explaining exactly what the issue is.
    For example, if you are having difficulties completing an exercise, mention exactly what the exercise is and what kind of problem you are having with it.
  • Make sure emails have the following parts:
    • an appropriate greeting (e.g., “Good morning, Professor Ecks”);
    • a clear body, that is, the paragraph or paragraphs organizing the important information;
    • an appropriate closing (e.g., “Thank you for your assistance”); and
    • your signature, that is, your name (and, if appropriate, your course and section).

    Note. For more information on effective and ineffective email messages in online courses, watch the live stream event about the topic of this course.