Tips to develop skills for self-directed learning
Use a time / task calendar
Break up a project into small manageable tasks
Write a learning plan (or learning contract)
Steps: write out briefly the four essential components of your learning
- your objectives
- your process and resources
- your target date
your standard for evaluation
Use Support Systems
- Be willing to ask your professor for help
- Ask classmates or colleagues
- Use online help
- Contact the university's support services
Seek a mentor
Know your best learning settings
- Do you need direct, in-person contact and facilitation?
Do you need a quiet, undisturbed setting for study?
- If you cannot be in your best learning environment, have strategies to adapt to the environment that you have
Reference: Guglielmino, L., & Guglielmino, P. (2003). Becoming a more self-directed learner. In G. Piskurich (Ed.), Getting the Most from Online Learning: A Learner's Guide. West Sussex: John Wiley & Sons.
Some free online tools that may help you organize
Toodledo: Online "to-do" list with organizing capabilities
Evernote: To capture (notes, reminders, websites), organize and search
Delicious: Store, tag, search and share your bookmarks
Dropbox: Allows you to sync your files online and across your computers automatically.
FreeMind: A free mindmapping tool
Of course, there are many others, and although these come with recommendations, they may or may not be the right source for you. Take advantage of what the internet has to offer and search for tools that may help you.
Page last modified June 14, 2013