Top Tips for Successful Online College Students

Woman attending classes online on a laptop

Attending college classes online is a new experience for many students. It can be intimidating, especially if you're used to a traditional classroom setting.

But even with the change in learning modes, thousands of online students are successful at meeting and working towards their educational goals, and you can be too!

Here are some highly recommended habits for efficient online student success.

Stay engaged with your support structure.

Be clear and open with your family, friends, and coworkers about what you're doing. That'll help reduce tension if you have to miss a lunch or a movie, and your loved ones will be the first to offer an encouraging word when you need it.

Keep up with your planner.

Whether you keep track of things in an app or write your tasks down on paper, be sure to use your planner early and often. Put in key due dates and classes as soon as you know them and keep them updated. Try scheduling time to complete assignments ahead of time so that you have flexibility later. Put all of your commitments on the same calendar, and consider a color-coding system so you know how to...


Many of our ODUGlobal students have a family, a job, or both. Some nights will need to be dedicated to class time, but of course your family and job can't be neglected. Planning and prioritizing are crucial. A healthy work/life/school balance is going to help keep you happy, your family and employer happy, and lead to you being more productive with your school work.

Work ahead.

When you have a few hours and if the class allows, work ahead! This could mean watching lectures ahead of schedule if your class is asynchronous. If you are taking a synchronous class and you can't get a jump on viewing lessons, use the time you have to read ahead or put together a study guide for upcoming exams.

Focus on the goal.

Everyone gets discouraged from time to time. When you're feeling tired, overwhelmed, or frustrated, refocus that energy on your goal! Whether you're seeking a graduate degree, credentials to boost your job search, skills that will assist with a promotion, or finally earning that degree, visualize your success. Reminding yourself of the "why" can keep you going!

Be active and present in classes.

You probably have limited time to spend on school work, so make it count! Set up a distraction-free environment so that you can focus and get the most out of your class and study time.

Don't forget, as an ODUGlobal student you have support every step of the way, from before you apply until after you graduate. Take advantage of academic and technical support, plus the camaraderie and guidance from your professors and classmates.

Find the program that's right for you and get started down the path to meeting your goals! Visit and choose from our 120+ programs.

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