Is Online Learning for Me?

Online learning is an option for students who are managing their time between demands of home, job, and school work. However, online learning is not for everyone. Consider the following before you enroll in an online course:

  • You should be a self-motivator. In order to successfully complete online assignments within a one week window of time, you should be self-disciplined enough to devote a few hours a day for the course work. You will not be a successful online learner if in a regular classroom you tend to turn in late assignments or put off your work until the last minute. A high maintenance student who has difficulty following written instructions or expects class material to be fed to them will find online classes difficult and challenging.
  • You should have time for the course. An online student can expect a three semester hour course to require at least nine hours of course work (reading, assignments, discussion boards, viewing videos, etc.). Since online classes take about the same amount of time as a regular classroom, you must consider your schedule and allotting at least nine hours of time in your week for one online course.
  • You should be computer competent. If the words browser, modem, mouse, and ISP sound foreign, you will need to become familiar with computer lingo. A distance learning student needs the right equipment to participate in an online course. Essential tools such as a modem, ISP, browser, anti-virus software and downloads are vital to successful participation. You will need to know how to attach files to an e-mail, navigate web pages, view files in various programs (Power Point, Adobe Acrobat, Word, etc.).
  • You should have keyboard skills. Your fingers will do the “walking and talking” via keyboard. Can you communicate comfortably through typing? Online students do not have to be avid writers, but should have the ability to organize their thoughts and be comfortable communicating them through writing. Whether you are efficient in keyboarding or ‘hunt and peck’ for the keys, you will be typing away for the entire course.
  • You should have the right computer equipment. Access to a computer with a good internet connection is vital to successful online learning. Some online courses will have audio or video files that you will need to download. Inadequate equipment will not perform the functions an online course requires. Refer to the “BTSR Computing Requirements” list in the Online content bar of the website.


*Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond seeks to be in compliance with all state and federal regulations governing online education as well as meeting ATS accreditation requirements for online courses.