MBA students often choose online programs for their flexibility. Students can fit classes around their other obligations and eliminate a commute to a campus, making online MBA study a good fit for a busy schedule. Once classes are underway, MBA students need to develop and use their time management abilities to make the most of their online courses and stay on top of deadlines. Use these five time management tips to get the most from online MBA courses.
1. Create a plan.
Find a study calendar that you will use throughout the program. Read over the syllabus and do these tasks before the course begins:
- Add the due dates on the study calendar.
- Plan and commit to study times for every class. The study times can fit around your schedule, but must be enough to meet the needs of course assignments. Look for periods with few or no interruptions for sustained study.
Online students often juggle family, work, and other responsibilities. A calendar helps one stay organized.
2. Know due dates far in advance.
Be aware of what assignments are due down the line. You should know the assignments due in four weeks’ time, not simply for tomorrow. Make use of additional time now or next week to begin early on assignments due later on. Avoid procrastination at all costs. Do not wait until the last minute to begin work on an assignment. This will reduce unnecessary stress and help when life events get in the way of the best of intentions.
3. Perform a daily check-in.
No matter where you are, as long as there is Wi-Fi, it is possible to keep up with online classes. Take a break while doing the laundry or waiting for service at a restaurant to go online and stay current with any syllabus changes and updates to minimize stress and plan study accordingly.
4. Use technology to your advantage.
Beyond the Internet, there are a number of ways that a smartphone or other device can make your life easier. Set reminders for due dates and for notice of upcoming events. In addition, use the Kindle app to view E-books or instructional material. This makes it easy to read the next chapter when there is downtime during errands. Consider a product like EasyBib.com to assist with easy bibliography formatting for MLA, Chicago style, and more. OneNote and Evernote are useful tools to take notes and comment on lectures and readings.
5. Make the most of online interactions.
Get a USB-based headset for the best sound quality for live video chat. According to U.S. News & World Report, Tadd Rosenfeld, chief executive officer at Team Launcher, said a USB-based headset is a “must-have for distance learning if you want to participate effectively in spoken classroom conversation over the Internet.”
Visit Pepperdine University to learn more about effective strategies for getting your online MBA in as few as two years.