Anxiety researcher Robb Dunn at NC State suggests that we experience anxiety because our primitive ancestors were somebody’s dinner. They were under constant threat to be eaten by giant hyenas, cave bears, lions, eagles, snakes, wolves, saber-toothed cats, and even giant, predatory kangaroos! When you get anxious about something like a new online course or how-to use e-learning technology your primitive brain is signaling danger, threat! Anxiety’s function is to motivate you to take action to survive or thrive. The causes of anxiety are different now like technology, but the anxiety feels the same.
Anxiety is a primitive emotion that shows you care and drives you to take action, grow, and succeed. However, high anxiety interferes with learning and performance. To reduce anxiety and succeed at online learning here are easy tips to get you ready to take an online course.
Before You Start:
Tip: Check your system requirements like internet speed and browser.
Tip: Set your cookie, pop-up blocker, and security features ahead of time to allow for pops ups and links.
When You Land on a Course for the first time, answer these questions:
- Why am I here? Look for the course title and catalogue description (sometimes this is not there, but will be in the syllabus).
- Who is the human to contact for help? Name, Credentials, and Link to Instructor’s biography.
- How do I contact the human? Email, Phone, Hours, Office Address, Special Instructions.
- What is my Call to Action (CTA)? Establish your online presence by doing the Introduction discussion.
- When should I come back here? Daily.
By taking these easy steps before and on the first day of class, online learning is less anxiety provoking. Next, we will look at tips for success like reading the syllabus and establishing a solid, professional online presence.