Four Tips for Successful Online Education

online-studentThe field of online study has grown in the last decade as the convenience of online education has attracted more students with the flexibility that traditional brick-and-mortar institutions cannot offer.  Yet, with greater freedom comes greater responsibility.  Here are four tips on how to optimize your online educational experience. Tip #1 Avoid Procrastination That’s right, I said it.  I can say it because I am personally the King of Procrastinators.  When you don’t have to be at a classroom at a specified time in order to study, it can become easy to put things off.  The flexibility of online classes can be a double-edged sword and can negatively impact your ability to pass.  Recommend developing a schedule that works for you and doing your best to stick to it. Tip #2 Take Advantage of All Online Resources School-sponsored online lectures, forums, tutorials, and even this blog are all offered to you to enhance your experience.  These activities, while frequently optional, are great opportunities to be exposed to knowledge outside of the textbooks.  Recommend taking full advantage of them all.  So we’ll see your comments here on the Allen Blog yes? Tip #3 Monitor Your Progress Regularly Without the daily, face-to-face with your professors, it can be easy to miss slippage in your academic performance.  Make a point of checking your personal progress with regularity.  If you notice a dip in performance, you can revisit your study techniques or explore additional online resources to help boost your output. Tip #4 Manage Time Wisely Related to Tip#1, time management is more than simply avoiding procrastination.  It also requires that the time(s) you set aside as study time be properly chosen.  You want to find time to study when you’re not too tired or otherwise occupied.  In order to ensure good comprehension and absorption of the materials, avoid studying at times when you cannot be focused or when you’re too tired.  Choose a time when you can fully concentrate.

54 Responses to “Four Tips for Successful Online Education”

  1. Tracy Burkholder

    Hi I just wanted to leave a comment. I am new to online education. I really thought that this was going to be a tough experience for me. I am a very organized person, and I tend to do things right away even if they are not due right away , instead of putting them off. I have discovered through my online education that you have to be very disciplined. You should try to set up some sort of schedule or routine that you try to follow regularly. It will help you to be successful. I find myself wanting to participate in the discussion thread. This is such a great tool. Not only do you communicate with your teacher, but you are communicating with your classmates as well. Reading your classmates post may help you understand something that you didn’t understand before. Good luck to all of the online students. I wish you success, and remember to discipline yourself.

    • Robin McFadden

      Hi I just wanted to comment on the tips. I have a big problem with procrastination in some areas and no problem in some. When I get off track it is hard to get back focused. Thank goodness I take this course seriously. I have to manage my progess, not because I want to, but because I have short term memory and sometimes I do no know if I did everything, and I like to do things right so I quadruple check things, and I am a stay at home mom so I have a lot of time to manage, so I think this course will help me to get really better organized always having these tips in mind.

  2. Tharry Salley

    I am going to speak on tips #1 and #4. First of all procrastination is an academic killer. A person can procrastinate until the last minuet and then just throw in anything and hope for a good grade. It is better if you actually plan and stick with your plan to get good grades. You have to respect the situation in order for the situation to respect you. In other words do it like you are supposed to. This does coinside with #1 because you have to manage your time wisely for it to work out for you. If you cut corners and try to throw something together quickly to turn in at the last minuet you will not reach as high as you would if you managed your time wisely and took more time to get a better grade.

    • Marti Van Hoose

      Tharry, you are so right. I think the best thing about online eduction is that you have to implement this self discipline. This, then, becomes good training for the work place. So many times in business, I have seen people procrastinate and then the impact of their lack of discipline often hurts others aroung them, not to mention runs the risk of not getting the job done well or at all.

  3. Hello,
    I wanted to comment on my experience so far, as an online student. It definitely takes commitment. I love the set up of Allen School. The process that is used makes it very clear on what needs to be done. There is easy access for questions as well. I am not saying the program is easy but it is user friendly. I would recommend this program for anyone who was interested in this career. The online experience is made so you can go to school and still do everything required in everyone’s busy lives. I had a 15 year career in the mortgage industry. I loved my career but unfortunately my company shut down our offices. I took a lot of time and research, and then decided to start a whole new career. I am very satisfied with my decision and also have been successful to this point. If I can do it, anyone can do it. After not being in school for 25 years, I am having no problem following the online curriculum. Again I am so happy I took the plunge.

  4. Pamela Hoff

    I am also new to online learning. I tend to put things off until the last minute and then rush to get it done. I am challenging myself to spend 5 hours per day on my class work. My doing classes online I will learn to be more organized and better on time management, I want this very much so I know I will stay dedicated. My household is busy. My mother who is 78 lives with me. My daughter and her three sons live with me so there is always allot happening around here. I have talked with them and they support me in my online learning. I am looking forward to seeing what else I learn. .

  5. Melanie Martin

    I am a big believer in time management and having a schedule and sticking to it. My first week I felt like I was all over the place. This is only my second week but I feel a lot better about what I have to do. I developed a system that works for me. I have set aside Monday’s as completely reading all materials and watching the presentations for both courses. I also like to get my initial dicussion out of the way. Tuesdays I start on my assignments and post my two replies in the discussion. Today is Wednesday and I completed all my assignments and quiz for MBICO01. The rest of the week will be for MBIC02 which is by far a lot more time consuming than I could have imagined. I also do a 1, 2, 3 check everytime I go into the course home page. On each course I first check the announcements for anything new, check the office and then check the discussion. As I previously stated, this week is going a lot better and I do not have that feeling of panic that I did the first week.

  6. Marilyn Trippe

    I was a little concerned, at first, about returning to class so late in life, but I find the material we are using, the Class Live presentations, the Office area for posting questions, the weekly discussion boards and the Student Services online support have been a great help. The instructors are very helpful, as are the classmates. Everything with The Allen School online is geared to the student’s success.
    My greatest hurdle to overcome has been that of procrastination, but I find that setting aside the time I need to study and do my required work becomes easier as time passes.
    I would have to say that making the decision to return to school and the choice of The Allen School online is one of my better life choices.

  7. Karen Coy-Clay

    I am a new student and I appreciate the tips very much. I believe that procratination is a killer and it will never get us where we want to be, so I applaud you for reminding us of that. Sometimes we tend to get too comfortable, become distracted and forget our goals. Another great reminder is time management; it is critical and should be taken seriously.
    As online students, we have to exercise the discipline of study, and as you suggested, we need to make use of the resources that are available.
    I have no regrets about studying with allenschoolonline; I am enjoying my classes, and I am looking forward to starting my new career as a HIM professional. This is one of my best decisions.
    Thank you for the tips.

  8. Sandra Schuelke

    I too am older and worried that I would not be able to remember things like I did when younger. I also am not very computer savvy, but I am at least doing something that will help my last years in the work force be more productive and obtain a job that I really love instead of taking what is available. That’s a good feeling for me. When you raise a family, you work the hours that you have to, take the jobs that are available. Now by attending the Allen School, its given me a whole new outlook on my future, and I feel very good about it.

  9. Emilia Ciardullo

    Hi, I am a new student to online learning. In reading the tips for success with online education and also the blogs of my classmates, I would have to say that I strongly agree. It is a very independent way to learn. You need to be a disiplined person. We all are very busy people, with different circumstances in our lives. Therefore we need to set a schedule that compliments our learning without compromising our life. Allen school aids in this mission for me.
    The assignments are given clearly at the beginning of each unit and you are given a week to complete them. This allows for you to manage your time in a step by step format. The discussion threads keep you in the loop with insight from your instructors as well as other students referenced research. I love the quizzes as they are great reinforcement of what you have learned and help you gage your progress. Finally on a personal level I just want to add that the instructors and my classmates are very helpful and encouraging.
    Thank you.

  10. Shelley Mason

    Hi I have always wanted to go to school but wanted my kids to get thru school first, now that there on there way to success, I feel it’s my turn. I got to admit that I am very scared, am I going to be able to keep up? am I going to be able to discipline myself to make this experience a success. I have found that I am discipling myself, I am not putting anything off, and I will make this a success for me and my family. The keeping up, I found my instructors very helpful. I had to email them a couple of times already and yes they responded immediately.

  11. Subrina Chowtie

    My name is Subrina Chowtie. I recently started my journey of online learning. I have to say, I have always found it interesting, I have always been curious about learning online. My main reason why i chose online learning is because I can do the classes at my own pace. I choose the time I want to attend class, and the best thing about it is, I can do classes in my PJs’! How cool is that? I also like that there is so much help available, if i get stuck on something an assignment, all i have to do is e-mail my instructor, and i normally get a reply within seconds. Also, if i have technical difficulties all i have to do is contact the help desk and right away, help is available. Online learning is fun and exciting, I love the classlive sessions, it give me a chance to meet my class-mates and have live discussions. In conclusion, I am 100% satisfied with my decision to take advantage of this opportunity of learning online and i would recommend it to everyone.

  12. Katie Von Mosch

    I am new to online learning. The first week I made sure that I had set aside time to work on my classwork and it had worked out alright. I did not accomplish everything like I had wanted to in the time frame I was hoping. I am trying to learn not to procrastinate. During this second week I have had an extremely hard time focusing and getting myself on track. Being a single mother with a 2 year old is not easy when I am at work all day (learning a new job) then come home and have to do the mommy job, finally after she is asleep I get to start working. I have learned that my lunch break is a great time to go into the discussion so then I can post my comments and make sure that I am understanding what is going on. I am hoping to be able to come up with a much better plan so then I am not cramming all of my school work into the weekend when I want to spend time with my daughter.


    Online learning has been a unique and a fascinating experience for me so far. It is my first time as an online student and it has been convenient way to receive my education compared to the traditional way of learning as to being in a four walled learning institute. I find that one has to be self-motivated and self-disciplined to get their school work done. But thank God through the support of my instructors, classmates and Student Services online learning has been one of the best decisions I have ever made.

  14. Kim Hamilton

    This forum of online classes is completely new to me. I have found it to be more time consuming than when I was in school as a youngster…back in the 70’s. It definitely takes commitment and a desire to succeed. You must decide when to study and how and do it because there is no one keeping an eye on you. As an adult, you made this choice, so it’s up to you to follow through. The threaded discussion is very interesting in that it’s like a classroom discussion only better because everyone gets a chance to talk. You get much more input from others. So far I’m really enjoying this and expect great things in the future.

    • I was a very concerned about returning to class so late in life, but I find the Class Live presentations great, I really like the icons and that everyone has the opportunity to talk. The Office area for posting questions is great and they respond so quickly, the weekly. The discussion threads are very informative and helpful and shows me I do have some knowledge to share and have alot I can learn from my classmates. Brian is great at online support. The Instructors are very helpful, and willing to stick with you no matter how dumb you may think your questionis. Everything with The Allen School online is geared to the student’s success.
      I find that setting aside the time I need to study and do my required work is made alot easier by using time management. I have always been a day timer person, so this has helped me alot in completing my assignments. Deciding to pick Allen Schools on line has made me appreciate more of the quality of my life and that I can succeed. I made an awesome decision and will go for more certifications.

  15. Kenyari Jones

    I wanted to comment on the first tip listed above. The biggest problem for most students coming into an online education setting is procrastrination. We know that we have to do the assignments within a deadline, but tend to put it off if we are doing other things or a long day at work. Sometimes it is hard to focus and buckle down but we have made a committment to learning online so we should be able to prepare ourselves and have assignments ready when they are due. Waiting until the last minute may end in us having questions or not understanding the assignment which may end with us not getting all of the credit that we could have gotten if we had prepared ourselves ahead of time. Making sure that we have scheduled time to do the assignments will make this experience in learning and learning online a pleasant one. Good luck Classmates!!

  16. Cristia Reyes

    I have experience with online learning and I have to agree with the steps indicated on this blog. Though every school and format is different these steps still apply. It is really easy to procrastinate when you’re at home and in a comfortable environment. The way I get through those times is by creating a schedule and posting it up in my work area. This has helped me be more organized and on top of all my school work. I also create a backup schedule just in case something occurs and I can’t follow the first. I create folders for my classes and keep track of all my school work. This helps me to continue working on my school work if I want to go outside or to the park with my children. My advice is that the best way to succeed and make your online learning experience a good one is to organize yourself. Most of all ask for help when you need it. After all of that online learning is great I get the best of both worlds, spending time with my family and a chance to better myself.

  17. Clariece J. Collins


    Online learning is an excellent way to have the best of both worlds – achieving a good education, along with achieving personal goals.

    Allen School Online presents the courses in a clear and concise format and it is an ideal way to learn. If I just follow the steps and stay focused, Allen School Online will get me where I want to go.

  18. Clariece J. Collins

    Online learning is an excellent way to have the best of both worlds – achieving a good education, along with achieving personal goals.

    Allen School Online presents the courses in a clear and concise format and it is an ideal way to learn. If I just follow the steps and stay focused, Allen School Online will get me where I want to go.

  19. Ella Plummer

    I also am new at online learning. It has been better than 30 years since I have been to school so this will be a challanage for me. The first two weeks have been a learning eperince on scheduling school study, online time. I work crazy hours and have my 74 year old father living with me and my grandchildern for half the summer. When I am home there is alway someone that wants my time. I have found before anyone gets and after they go to bed is the time I am able to use computer time. And when at work when there is quite time and Iafter I have put my clients to bed is a good time to study. I find it easier to read posts than to post myself because by the time I think of what I want to post or get a chance to it has already be posted. So I read listen and apply.

  20. Mamica Dapshi

    It is true that online learning is different from classroom study but at the same time is a big challenge for every online student. I totally agree with four tips listed above. Even though, most of materials are available online we’ll still have to study traditionally with our textbook and this requires managing the time with efficiency. I am a mother of two beautiful kids with a very busy life and the biggest challenge for me is to deal with tip#1, avoiding procrastination. Of course, our home is our classroom, however we are not alone. The instructors and Student Services online support are always ready to help at any time. Also, the discussions threads have given me the chance to communicate with other classmate and instructors and it is a good tool for a better understanding. I really enjoyed the ClassLive session last week. As the first time in this type of setting, it was e very good experience and challenge. So far the online learning has been an excitement and I definitely would encourage other people to take online courses.

  21. Shanikqua Houston

    Hi. I have recently started my experience with online learning. I thought it was going to be tough and differcult, but I find it to be fascinating. I always wanted to return to school but having four kids, it was a bit differcult. I always focused my time on them. One day I went browsing through the internet and thought to myself to give it a try and here I am. I try to keep myself on a schedule and complete my assignemtns in a timely fashion. I love the experience and wouldn’t change it for the world. Good Luck to everyone on their journey and success and hope to see ya’ll at graduation.

  22. Ruth Caringal

    I am from the Philippines, and I am new to online class and to the system of education here in the United States. For me online education through Allen School is a great opportunity to earn an in-demand course at your convenience. There is no need to travel and go to the school campus. With the career-focused Medical Billing and Coding student can gain knowledge without stepping into a classroom. Student send assignment online, participate class discussion and class live session like in the traditional classroom that has a teacher that explain the subject matter and you can raise your hand to participate to the session. Teachers are able to provide students with information that is easy to access. Online education is the way to achieve my goal, increase my knowledge in the particular area of study. I am working 24 hours shift every other day and I feel that I cannot study the lesson for the week. With the proper budgeting of my time, I am able to discipline myself to be on time. If not I send email to my instructor. Online education offers the ability to choose which method you prefer. It allows freedom and flexibility you need to get education you deserve. Just learn your time! So far, I am enjoying studying online, and was glad that I made a right decision and choice to study online at Allen School

  23. I know because of my personal experience that discipline is essential, without it it’s almost impossible to follow an online course. Also I’ll add another tip and it would be “keep in touch with other students” this is important since you can take advantage of their own experiences and also you can compare your progress with theirs. so if the course gives you the cahnce to post in blogs or forums, you’d better do it. it’s part of learning online.

  24. Brittany Oliver

    Throughout the MIBC program, I was surprised to learn how much learning there was in Medical billing & coding. I was so surprised throughout the whole program finding out how much there was to learn. Online learning was definitely the right choice for me. When I first thought about online learning, I thought “wow, thats a joke, that would be so easy”. I was greatly mistaken. The requirements for the online classroom seem even more than a regular classroom, and I think that was what I liked about it the most. If any one is skeptical about utilizing this program, and especially with the medical billing program, don’t be. This program is fun, challenging, and you learn so much. You learn not only about medical billing and coding, but about how to get a great job after.

  25. Karen Coy-Clay

    I am really enjoying my classes. As care-giver to my husband who has been diagnosed with cancer, I am able to take care of him, spend quality time with my studies, and not miss my online classes. All the materials that are needed are available for me to learn and be successful in my studies. The instructors are very qualified and are available whenever I need help; the technical support team is always ready to take care of gliches and ensure that problems are taken care of in a timely manner. Again, I am extremely happy that I made the decision to enrol as a student at Allen School. I give allenschoolonline 100%.

  26. Elizabeth Painter

    Time management and dedication are two things I have learned with online classes. I have to say that returning to school after sooooooooo many years, I had concerns, especially since it was online. But I found myself to be so much more dedicated now than I was when I was in college. I remember cutting classes because we were having such a good time hanging out in the quad on campus. I guess a lot of it has to do with maturity and priorities, (and also the fact that this time around I am the one paying for it, not my parents-LOL).
    It’s been a struggle at times, trying to balance work and school, but I think if we are dedicated to what we are doing, we will succeed.
    For my class it is almost over. We have two more weeks in this module and then 6 weeks after that and we are finished. The work was hard, but the time went fast. I had excellent instructors who helped every step of the way. I made new friends, (though I’ve never actually met them), and I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything.

  27. Linda Palumbo

    Online learning has been great for me. It gives me the opportunity to achieve the education required to meet my career goals on my schedue. One thing I have learned is never say ” I can do that assignment tomorrow” you never know what tomorrow will bring. Always devote time each day for study and completion of assignments. A good basic understanding computers is a must to be able to navigate through school website and to understand how to submit your assignments in the appropriate format. Don’t be affraid to ask questions, the instructors are great and encourage students by offering assistance as needed. The online education allows me to study at my own pace leaving me time to take care of my family. Course expectations are easy to understand and follow. We all know when are work is due. I feel to achieve your goals as an online student you must be organized and dedicated to a schedule that allows you to learn and be successful. One big piece of advise properly backup or save your work. My computer crashed and I lost that weeks work. I had my assignments saved on a memory stick but for some reason could not reload the files to my computer. Allen Online School has been a wonderful experience for me. I recommend it to all. Thanks.
    Linda Palumbo

  28. Marisa Haynes

    I am really enjoying online learning. It fits so well into my schedule and lets me work at my own pace. The classes are very challenging and give me a chance to work my brain in ways I haven’t done in quite some time as it’s been a long time since I was in school and had to do this type of “thinking”. Having completed 2 courses and just about to finish 2 more, I am learning so much about things I didn’t know. Some of the pictures in my anatomy classes are a little too graphic for my stomach, but I will muddle through. The Medical Insurance and Billing Course is very challenging and complex. I think it is a portent of what new things there are to come in future courses and I hope I am ready for it. Good luck to everyone.

  29. Sharlene Claytor

    I have certainly learned alot from the Allen Schools. I thought at first my age might be a problem. However, my grades are great, and i have had exceptional Teachers. Sometimes I wish it was a clasroom setting where we could all see each other and get to know one another. But, this has been good, I feel like I know my classmates and maybe they know me, in a certain way. I would recommend this course to alot of people. Especially if you are working, caring for adult parents, etc. The time frames and ease of functunality is great.

    Sharlene Claytor

  30. Christina Courtney

    I am enjoying the continuing education available through Allen School Online. I appreciate that I can learn at my convenience. The other advantages to online learning for me are: I do not have to put miles on my vehicle or be stuck in traffic, I can work at my own pace by fitting the class work into my schedule, and class live is a great way to interact with the professor and the other students participating in this online program. I am amazed at the technology utilized during class live. There is chat, presentations, automation and a white board to write on. I hope all of you are enjoying your experience too.

  31. Maria Kaszanics

    I know how everyone feels, this is my first time doing online classes. It is so different then in the classrooms, with me working fulltime this is perfect for me!! Except I do the same thing and procrastinate, it has been hard to keep on a schedule with my days off at work changing ever other month.
    But I have learned alot from these classes about researching and finding resourses. I also never realized how much was involved in the MIBC courses, but was able to hang in there to complete the course.
    So take it from someone who has been there, keep in mind if I can make it so can you!!

  32. I understand that a lot of people don’t consider that education spending belongs there, but to me it’s very hopeful that $100 billion can strengthen education during a recession that would otherwise have devastated America’s schools. I also veer into the research on what works and doesn’t work in education. What strikes me is the evidence that the teacher outweighs everything — you’re much better off with a remarkable teacher in a large class in a awful school than with a weak teacher in a small class in an outstanding school. Yet, we invariably reserve the best teachers for the privileged students in suburban schools whose parents are already investing money, time and energy into their kids. The disadvantaged kids in inner city districts who are the neediest get the worst teachers.

  33. Susan Gorden

    I graduated from college in 1981 with an associate degree in radiology. My learning experience was without the use of any computers. I was very eager to take this online program, but I was intimidated with my lack of experience using a computer for learning. I was very much relieved after a couple of weeks to learn that I could navigate my way around the classes pretty easily. Looking back over the past nine months, I have come to realize that not only was I learning new material, I was also learning great computer skills that I would not otherwise have acquired. So, for me, this program was a double win in learning new skills. I have come to understand that the online learning experience was the best choice for me.

  34. Deanne Moore

    When reflecting on my journey with choosing Allen School it has been a long hard journey. I first became interested in billing and coding while working at m current employment. When I researched schools I asked questions and how I found about Allen School was through my mom. I was a little intimidated at first when I started school, but I am glad I stuck with it. After the first 2 weeks of classes I wanted to give up, but with the support of my mother and the instructors at Allen School I made it. Thank you to all my instructors for giving me positive feedback and advice to hang in there and not give up.

  35. Soroya Warren-Pinheiro

    I am graduating from the Allen School this week and I must say that I have learned a lot about refining my study habits.
    My pointers for any future and present Allen School students would be:

    1. Always find a quite place to study, away from all distractions
    2. Make sure you eat a meal or snack before you begin to study or take an exam, this way your not distracted by a hungry tummy.
    3. Organize all of your supplies and have everything you need at hand before you start studying or taking an exam.
    4. Don’t study with a cluttered mind, try and find an outlet and relax before you start your studying, this way you will have an easier time retaining the information you study.

    These are just a few tips that worked for me during my time at the Allen School

  36. I had worked in a Blood Center for 29yrs and 10 months before I was let go. I was out of work for 9 months and my eyes have opened up, I was unaware of all the unemployed people. I love the healthcare field, I ‘m a care giver and I relized that I needed a new career to get into the hospitals, doctor offices etc. Billing and Medical oding seemed to be the step I needed to get into that door. I have a job now thatis working for a Medical Job placement, until I can get certified in Billing and Coding and start the new career.
    Everyone at Allen School has been wonderful.

  37. Laura Ortega

    Wow, it’s hard to believe my time with the Allen School will be over at the end of this week! It’s amazing to think just 9 short months ago I was just starting my new career transformation. I graduated in 2007 with a degree in horticulture and though that was my calling in life, but it wasn’t. Because of the economy there weren’t any jobs for me or any I felt happy with. My husband was laid off last Christmas with a baby due the next month and I knew we were in trouble. After my son was born I enrolled in this program. It was the best decision I ever made not only for myself, but my family as well. In addition to following the above tips for on-line education I had the support of my family and the wonderful teachers at the Allen School. The courses are easy to follow and very informative. You know exactly what to do and when it needs to be turned in. If I were asked, “Would you do anything differently?” My response, “No way, The Allen School rocks!”

  38. I really liked your posting about this, and I’ve seen a few more like it recently – the best part about yours is, it’s very informative and useful and full of good information without a bunch of usless rants and BS!

    I’ll be sure to give this URL to some friends

    Thanks Again

  39. swollanichoni

    The action taken to national disaster is awesome but it’s a damn shame that so many citizens take advantage of the sad situations.

    I mean everytime there is an earthquake, a flood, an oil spill – there’s always a group of heartless people who rip off tax payers.

    This is in response to reading that 4 of Oprah Winfreys “angels” got busted ripping off the system. Shame on them!

  40. Set your goals

    Choosing a school to attend online has also become a very simple task. All you have to do is search for schools in your area, apply, and they will send you all the information you will need to get on with your education online. The reason you will want to chose a school in your area is because some of the courses you may take will required you to meet once or twice for exams or group projects.. ………..

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