eLearning Guides

Being an eLearner

An effective eLearner needs to:

Be in class at agreed times

Being an eLearner gives you some flexibility and mobility about when and where you access learning materials and learning activities. eLearning does not replace attendance at lectures, laboratories and tutorials set by your lecturer and it does not substitute for your active engagement with online materials and activities.


Be connected to a computer and the internet

You can access UOW eLearning materials from any computer with an internet connection. While your home or work computer is one option for accessing online resources 24 hours a day 7 days a week, the University also provides student computers in libraries, laboratories and learning spaces at all UOW locations. If your home computer does not have broadband internet access, downloading of some materials may be slow.

If you are accessing the eLearning Space, check that your computer has been configured with the appropriate browsers.


Be an effective communicator

eLearning provides you with the opportunity to reflect on information before responding or submitting. Before responding to online communications you must clearly understand what has been said. Read everything before replying as you may need to sort through previous postings to follow argument threads. Print out readings or new messages to review them before forming a response. Carefully consider your responses or communications to ensure that your message is clear, logical and obvious. Compose your message off-line to take advantage of word functionalities and then paste to the online environment.

Appreciate that instant responses from your lecturer or fellow eLearners may not always be possible. Guidelines and strategies for being an effective and considerate online communicator are outlined in the Netiquette Guide


Be able to manage time efficiently

Regular access to your online learning environment is essential. Balance your time to ensure that you attend to the scope of experiences and schedule of events in your subject. Stay on top of your readings and set aside enough time each week to participate in your online activities. If you are a novice online user, allow yourself time to acquire necessary eLearning skills and Information Literacy skills.


Be self-motivated and self-disciplined

Discipline yourself to follow the eLearning schedule so you can complete all online activities on time. Appreciate that online learning and resources complement but cannot replace face-to-face learning activities. Don't expect your lecturer to spoon feed you. Take some initiative and use the power of this learning environment to do your own additional research. Know how to use the library online.


Be an active eResearcher

Your understanding of and proficiency in a subject does not grow just because you take notes at lectures you attend nor because you use highlighter pen on e-readings provided by the lecturer.

Learning comes from synthesis of information across a number of sources including your own research and experience; analysis of meanings, trends and outcomes of your research; articulating your findings and opinions by writing or speaking about them; plus active reflection from you, about your learning process and how you can improve it next time.

Active learning and researching is as important in eLearning as it is in face-to-face learning. Find out more about study skills and writing skills with Learning Development resources and in the Uni Learning Guide.


Be open-minded and patient

eLearning presents an opportunity for you to participate and communicate in a non-threatening, safe and supportive environment. It is important that you accept the understandings and views of other students and that you are willing to share your knowledge and experiences with other students.

You may also need to be patient with technical glitches. They DO happen and are a part of life, it is more productive to "go with the flow" than panic. Becoming proficient with technology will prepare you for lifelong learning and your professional life after graduation


Be willing to "speak up"

If you are experiencing difficulty on any level, communicate this immediately to your tutor or lecturer so that solutions can be found. Your feedback is appreciated and acted upon, so please take the opportunity to 'have your say' by participating in online surveys sent to you.


Be original and avoid plagiarism

Your university work is expected to be original, based on thorough research, analysis and synthesis, with appropriate acknowledgement and referencing. Avoid the temptation to cut and paste in electronic environments. Familiarise yourself with the University's plagiarism policy and learn how to be a researcher using the Research Edge self-paced tutorial.

The University has a licence for Turnitin, an electronic text matching system, which provides the user with an 'originality report' check. You can use Turnitin to check your work for originality, before submitting.


Last reviewed: 10 April, 2015


Help is available should you require assistance engaging with any of the UOW eLearning technologies or services.

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How does eLearning@UOW benefit me?

The goal for eLearning@UOW is to support active independent learning as well as collaborative learning communities.

In developing competence as an eLearner you will be developing a number of the Graduate Qualities, including:

  • skills to enable you to become an independent learner
  • the capacity to act responsibly
  • problem-solving skills