Tips for Success

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Student success takes motivation, discipline, and communication. This is true no matter how you are taking a course, whether it be in a traditional classroom or on the Internet. Yet, taking a course on the Internet involves a brand new set of skills and knowledge you may not have experienced. This area was created to assist you in becoming familiar with what these skill sets are and understand how to apply them in order to become more successful in your online courses.


Make sure you know who to contact when having problems.

Prepare Your Computer and Browser

1. Conduct a Computer System Check:
Before entering your course for the first time
make sure to do a Computer System Check to verify your browser is supported and set properly for working in Desire2Learn. This check system should indicate if you need to enable Java, Cookies or update your browser.

To enable Java & Cookies view the following:

2. Make sure you are using the recommended Browser(s) & Software:

3. Have the most updated versions of the following:

Time Management

Managing your time can be done successfully by taking control over the amount of time you spend on specific activities. To help manage your time use the online course Syllabus, Calendar and Checklist (if used by the instructor) as well as:

  • Create a Routine Study Schedule

Develop and plan for a dedicated block of study time for each day during the week. Keep in mind times in which you are most productive, such as early morning or late evening.

  • Find a Study Space

Locate an area in your home that is free from distractions in which you can concentrate and focus your attention on the work at hand. The local library may be an alternation study space.

  • Weekly Review

Once a week review and update your assignments and calendar. Increase the number of reviews per week the closer you get to an assignment deadline and exam date.

  • Prioritize your assignments

When studying focus on the more difficult assignment/project first. You will be fresh and more alert.

  • Get Something Done

If you are having problems writing a paper or beginning a project just roughly draft out your ideas, the assignment details will come to you later during your weekly review.

  • Identify Resources to help you

Use our tutors, instructors, a friend, the Internet or library to save you time, energy and solve problems.


There are many factors involved with knowing whether you are a good match for online learning. VARK is a questionnaire that provides a profile of your learning preferences and then matches appropriate strategies which can be used to help you be more successful in this independent and technology focused environment.

To help you better understand your strengths take the VARK 16 question questionnaire.

Glossary of Online Terms

Words such as file size, internet speed, upload, storage space, bookmarks, browser, cookies and URL's are all common terms on the Web. If you are new to taking online courses understanding these terms can be like learning a foreign language, so it is important to your online success to become familiar with them early.

This section discusses terms and definitions specific to working with internet based files. Although we can't possibly list all the terms, many of the ones we do present will be referred to by your instructor and referenced when working with tools in your online course.

Click "Play" to view the following Terms presentation.

If you experience issues with viewing this video read the Trouble Viewing Videos section below.

Length: 7 min | Transcript (pdf)

Trouble Viewing Videos

You may be missing the correct player or plug-in for the browser you are using to view the video.

1. Try using a different browser. For example if you are using the Firefox browser change to Internet Explorer, or vice versa.

2. You may need to install the Windows Media Player. Install the player based on browser type:

3. Upgrade your Java based on browser type:

4. If you are a Mac user try selecting the Quicktime text link provided for the presentation as opposed to clicking on the "Play" button.

5. Depending on your browser settings, Quicktime may take a moment to load and you may need to select the play arrow to begin video.


Office Hours
7:30 AM-5:00 PM

Sophia Rodrigue
Room A.202
Phone (979) 230-3436

Bryan Brown
Technical Specialist
Room A.211
Phone (979) 230-3487

Angela Elder
Technical Specialist
Room A.212
Phone (979) 230-3594

Linda McConnell
Director, Distance Learning
Room A.203
Phone (979) 230-3368