If you ever needed to have a one-on-one meeting with your instructor in a traditional classroom, you probably came to class early, stayed for a few minutes after or consulted with him or her during office hours.
But how do you do that when you’re earning your degree online, short of hopping on a plane, renting a car and showing up at your mentor’s house? (Side note: Don’t do that.)
The truth is, you can chat with your mentor in your online course just as you would in a traditional setting. Through your course’s Private Student-Mentor Forum, you can correspond privately with your mentor or set up a convenient time for a phone call. No searching for an email address or worrying if a spam filter blocked your message.
So, now that you know it is possible to chat one-on-one with your mentor, the real question becomes, how do you know when you need help? To figure that out, consider these five situations when you should talk to your mentor and get the help you need.
1. You’re feeling overwhelmed.
If you’re having trouble adapting to the online course environment or are experiencing some academic challenges, let your mentor know so that he or she can collaborate with you on your options.
2. Life just got in the way.
If life events are hindering your ability to do your course work, speak to your mentor about it. If you’ve had a personal setback, are trying to recover from an accident or illness or need to shift your focus to your career or family members, let your mentor know so that he or she can work with you on possible solutions.
3. You’ve encountered some technical challenges.
Whether accessing your courses, submitting your assignments or taking your exams on your computer or device. Let the University staff or your mentor know about it. You can also submit a HelpDesk ticket in myEdison® and describe the problem. Staff can walk you through a resolution.
4. You need clarification on the University’s policies on late assignments along with your options.
Under most course assignment policies, points could be deducted from your grade for each week your assignment is late. However, by notifying your mentor that your assignment may be delayed and providing him or her with a new, agreed-upon submission date, it’s possible to avoid the penalties.
5. You think you may benefit from a course extension or are feeling that your course load is unmanageable.
Discuss your options with your mentor or reach out to the Office of Admissions and Enrollment Services for help by calling (609) 777-5680 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Staff can offer options, guidance or connect you with an academic advisor. You can always utilize the Class Lounge in your online courses to find out what fellow students recommend. Fellow students can provide a good sounding board and routinely rally around those who need help.
Written by Thomas Edison State University