As an online learner, aiming to be a professional in the field of primary school teaching, I have learned many skills and attributes that will help me become successful both in study and in my career. I have experienced how studying online is different from a traditional classroom and have been able to explore a number of online sources of information and distinguish their credibility by evaluating them using Metzger's (2007) criteria. .
During these first three weeks of study, I have been able to consider the skills and attributes that I will need in order to be successful for both my online studies and future work placement. These skills include effective time management for lesson plans and classroom productivity; great communication skills to convey what is needed from the students and to be able to talk with parents about their child's needs and progress; being able to work collaboratively with many different people from many different cultures; adaptive thinking (Institute for the Future, 2011) which will allow me to assess the classroom dynamics and adapt to fit the situation; media literacy to introduce 21st century media into the classroom; and a design mindset which will help in developing lesson plans and presenting these plans in the classroom to achieve the desired outcome. I have also learned that I will need to continue to assess my skills and update them as needed.
Learning online is different than traditional classrooms, in this instance, because we are all coming into study not as 'blank slates' or 'empty vessels' but with prior knowledge whether it be through other studies, through work or even through family or community circles. It provides us with contact from people that we may never meet, people from different cultures and even allows us to interact with people across different countries. Learning online is a great way to be actively involved in a responsive 'classroom'.