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How to Find the Smart Kids in an Online Class

U.S. News and World Report

In contrast with a traditional classroom, online courses present different challenges to those trying to identify the intellectual leaders in a class. Students looking for motivation, accountability, peer support, or even partners for group assignments, for example, might be unsure how to find and connect with strong, reliable peers.

Shannon McDonald, an elite coach at InsideTrack – a company that provides success coaching to college students – has noticed that “connecting with the strong students in an online class is a valuable motivational tool.” People tend to “work harder and smarter and with greater determination when we feel connected to other people,” she says. “We feel accountable when there’s connectivity.”

What exactly should online students look for, then, when trying to connect with their stronger classmates?

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Press Releases

National study of non-first-time students shows full-time enrollment may not be appropriate for all

The latest findings from the nation’s first effort to benchmark the persistence patterns of non-first-time (NFT) college students indicate that NFT students are more likely to complete an associate degree and less likely to drop out if they combine full-time and part-time enrollment. The findings could renew discussions about the efficacy of mandatory “15 credit per semester” policies at 2-year programs.

NFT_EnrollmentIntensity

“Returning students are typically balancing work, family and other commitments that ebb and flow in intensity over the course of their academic career,” says Dave Jarrat, vice president of marketing at InsideTrack. “Mixing part-time and full-time enrollment enables these students to persist through the inevitable fluctuations in their life obligations.”

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