Academic Resources

Online and Hybrid Learning


Hybrid learning is defined as a course where 25-50% of in-class time is replaced with online coursework while online courses are 51-100% online. Both hybrid and online courses require as much or more time doing assignments and may not work well for all students. Before applying for an online or hybrid course, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Can I organize my time well, even when managing multiple demands?
  • Do I have good reading and writing skills, especially in an online setting?
  • Am I am comfortable with using the Internet, email, and various software applications?
  • Am I comfortable discussing and interacting with others online?
  • Do I enjoy working independently, am self-motivated enough to finish assignments on deadline, and can work with little to no supervision?

If you answered "yes" or felt comfortable about most of these statements, then an online or hybrid course may be suitable for you.

Learn more about hybrid learning from Learning Technologies.

Hybrid/Online Learning Tips

Here are some tips and additional information, for those looking to take, or are already taking, an online or hybrid course:

  1. Be self-motivated
    You will be on your own and working solely online 25-50% of the time for a hybrid and more than 50% online for an online class, so remember to stay focused, set both short and long-term goals, be confident in yourself and your work, and be passionate about what you are learning. Ultimately, you are the only one responsible for attempting and finishing the work, so make sure you understand how well you work alone, especially on long-term projects.
  2. Stay organized and manage yourself effectively
    It is essential that you stay organized, not only with your documents and files, but also with your time, which is spent both in the classroom and/or online. Create a schedule to ensure that tasks are being completed and that you are prepared for what is next. Also, organize your files and documents thoroughly so they are readily accessible. Creating structure will prevent confusion and headaches in the future.
  3. Take the class seriously
    Even though online/hybrid classes are designed to be flexible, you are still expected to invest the same, or more, amount of time and effort as you would be in a traditional classroom setting. As a result, be sure to know what to expect from the course by reading through the syllabus thoroughly and speaking with the instructor.
  1. Identify your learning style
    Understanding your personality and learning style can help you determine how successful you will be in various hybrid/online learning situations. For example, knowing if you enjoy working in groups or working by yourself on a project could be helpful.
  2. Have access to the right technology
    As an online/hybrid student, having the right technology means having an efficient personal computer with an updated software suite and operating system, consistent access to high speed Internet, and an updated Internet browser. When problems arise, make sure to immediately contact your professor, peers, or other relevant resources, such as the IT helpdesk or LT department, for assistance.
  3. Take advantage of available resources
    Since much of an online or hybrid course will be online, you can take advantage of looking for resources and answers on the Internet, as well as openly communicating with your instructor and peers on Canvas, through email, etc. Listed below are some UW options:

Further Reading