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Introduction to Online Learning

Introduction to Online Learning
A Guide for Students

April 2010 | 136 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc


A survival guide companion for students beginning their first online or hybrid class

Introduction to Online Learning introduces first-time distance learners to the realities of Web-based education and serves as the most comprehensive, practical guide to achieving success when facing online-specific barriers as well as common academic hurdles. Written by an experienced instructor, this invaluable aid shows students how to overcome challenges related to e-mail communication, technological catastrophes, staying organized on a daily basis, and more. Students learn to take advantage of the unique resources available for those enrolled in internet-based programs and to make the most of their Web-based educational experience by tailoring it to their personal strengths, needs, and learning styles.

Key Features

  • The author provides clear explanations of how to tailor research, writing, and citing sources to the online classroom, as well as when citations are necessary
  • Concrete, original examples link the text to students' personal experiences; illustrations vividly bring material to life
  • Screenshots and excerpts from online syllabi help students navigate their first course requirements
  • Examples of appropriate discussion board interaction aid students in progressing in their course with confidence
  • Self-assessments guide students in determining individual learning styles and levels of preparedness

Open-access student study site at

This open-access student study site includes first-person testimonials and advice from online students and instructors, links to relevant Web sites and resources, and self-quizzes.

Intended Audience
This groundbreaking supplement is a must-have for any student enrolled in an online course or degree program, or for students enrolled in hybrid courses including a mix of online and classroom learning.

This resource can be packaged with any SAGE textbook at a significant discount. Contact your sales representative for more information!

Chapter 1: Debunking the Myths of Online Education

Myth #1: Taking online courses is "settling" for a lesser-quality education

Myth #2: I am feeling overwhelmed; online learning must not be for me

Myth #3: I don't know my way around a computer: I can't do this!

Myth #4: With online education, I am "going it alone"

Myth #5: I am online all the time; this will be easy!

Myth #6: Online learninG requires less time than traditional education

Myth #7: Since this is an online course, I can complete the coursework whenever I want

Myth #8: My online Coursework will not be respected by others


Reflection Questions

Chapter Checklist

Chapter 2: Where do I Start?

Technology Basics

Getting Comfortable with Online Campus

Exploring the Online Classroom

Knowing What to Look For


Reflection Questions

Chapter Checklist

Chapter 3: Getting Organized

Getting Organized

Where to Find the Space

Special Considerations When Working at Home

Finding Office in the Community

Where to Find the Time

The Importance of Balance


Reflection Questions

Chapter Checklist

Chapter 4: "Where do I turn for Help?" Knowing Your Resources

Getting Answers to School-Specific Question

Technological Resources

Academic Resources

Social Resources

Counseling Services

Financial Support


Reflections Questions

Chapter Checklist

Chapter 5: When the Worst Happens and How to Cope


The Importance of Perspective
Technology Matters

Tips and Tricks to Minimize Technical Catastrophes

Responding to Common Problems

Family, Work or Personal Emergencies

Physical Limitations to Writing

School-Related Problems

When You Have Fallen Behind...


Reflection Questions
Chapter Checklist

Chapter 6: Learning Styles


Know Your Strengths

The Delivery of Information

Kolb's Learning Styles

Other Considerations in Learning Style


Reflection Questions
Chapter Checklist

Chapter 7: Written Communication


Computer-mediated, Communication, Academic Style

Discussion Boards


Formal Writing Assignments


Reflection Questions
Chapter Checklist

Chapter 8: Conducting Quality Research for Your Online Class


Why Research?

Types of Resources

Researching for Your Online Class


Reflection Questions
Chapter Checklist

Chapter 9: Citing Your Sources


Citing 101

Knowing When to Cite

Knowing How to Cite

Peparing to Cite Your Sources


Reflection Questions

Chapter Checklist


I'm requiring it for all of my online students because many have a hard time adapting to online learning. I will be writing one of these myself soon!

West College Of Education, Midwestern State University
November 14, 2013

A useful introduction to on-line learning for students embarking on distance learning modules

Mrs Carol Ellis
Health , Anglia Ruskin University
October 31, 2012

Excellent introduction, concise and easy reading.

Mr James Sales
Sch of Health, Psychology & Soc Care, Manchester Metropolitan University
May 26, 2011

This text has been helpful in assisting students in their individual online course design projects.

Dr Rita McNeil
Human Resource Train Dev Dept, Idaho State University - Pocatello
May 17, 2011

I'm having the bookstore order it as a "Recommended," as opposed to "Required" text. A lot of it doesn't apply to the particular course, as designed, but I think the earnest student would find it interesting and useful.

Note: In the prompt above this box, "relevent" shoud be "relevant." :-)

Professor M Sheridan Embser-Herbert
Sociology Dept, Hamline University
May 10, 2011

Excellent source for students seeking to understand the principles behind elearning and why it is now, or should be, an integral part of their learning environment.

Mrs Michelle Rogers
Centre for Early Childhood, University of Worcester
November 5, 2010

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