Completing courses online can present some challenges. Yet, it is possible—and advisable—to apply the skills you use to be successful at work in this unique learning environment. Consider, for instance, what you have learned throughout your career about the value of careful time management, planning, and effective use of technology. How might these skills help you to accomplish your academic goals while fulfilling responsibilities in other areas of your life?

This Discussion builds upon last week’s introduction to your chosen doctoral degree, and asks you to evaluate the skills that can help you to be a successful online learner.

To prepare:

  • Review the strategies and tips in the documents linked in this week’s Learning Resources, such as “Technical Tips for Learning at Walden,” “Citing a Discussion Posting in APA Style,” and those presented in “Becoming a Successful Online Learner”. Look for strategies related to time management, planning, studying, and using technology that you think would contribute to your success as an online learner in each of these areas.
  • Which of these strategies have you employed in the past (academically or professionally)? Of those you have not tried, which do you think would be most valuable? Why do you think so?

By Day 3

Post a cohesive response that addresses the following:

  • Describe one strategy that you have used in the past (academically or professionally) that has empowered you in terms of one or more of the following skill sets: planning, time management, studying, and effective technology use. Explain how this strategy has been advantageous.
  • Evaluate a strategy that you have yet to try but believe would be beneficial given your strengths and weaknesses.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ postings.

By Day 5

Respond to at least one of your colleagues, evaluating at least one strategy that is new to you and explaining how and/or why you think it will contribute to your success as an online doctoral student.

Submission and Grading Information

Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:

Week 2 Discussion 1 Rubric

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Post by Day 3 and Respond by Day 5

To participate in this Discussion:

Week 2 Discussion 1


Holly DeKilder

RE: Discussion 1 – Week 2-Holly DeKilder


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Historical Success

In an online educational program, there are many strategies one must develop to be successful. Time management is one of the most important strategies for me. Distractions can derail ones focus and lead to failure. Time management is complex with all the competing factors in the busyness of life. In a traditional setting, class time is offered on campus at a specific time there is a clearly defined classroom and base to start the learning process. In the online classroom, the flexibility requires one to engage with increased frequency (Alvarez Sainz et al., 2019). While the flexibility can be helpful, it also requires dedication to manage successfully. One strategy I have used in the past is to write out my schedule and plan my class time in a way like my undergraduate studies where I have a schedule that required me to be in specific rooms on campus. Time blocking is what I currently use and have found helpful. To time block, one simply creates immovable blocks within their schedule. As work arrival times are fixed for many, the same dedication is needed for success in an advanced degree setting. Making a list of the items I need to accomplish and establishing a time to complete each component has been helpful.

Anticipated Success

A new strategy I look forward to trying is the effective use of technology. I have found I often get pulled away by my phone and how it allures me to look at it each time it makes a noise. To minimize the distraction of my phone I am planning on silencing my phone during my devoted time blocks to ensure I am less distracted. Using the “do not disturb” setting will help ensure my eyes are not pulled to my phone. Technology overload is common in our world today (Orhan et al., 2021). While I expect this to help, I know myself and will also need to put the phone in another room to ensure I do not carelessly pick it up and venture down a rabbit hole only to find I have wasted the hour I set aside to accomplish a task. Knowing weaknesses and strengths of oneself is imperative. Learning daily areas one can improve will allow for adjustments that will lead to great success.


Success in any educational endeavor is complex. Current world situations with lockdowns, limitations on group meetings and life fluctuations are requiring agile mindsets for many. The flexibility of online education is great for social distancing and ensures educational endeavors can continue without major interruption. With this flexibility comes responsibility and establishing a robust plan will improve the likelihood of successful completion. Time management allows for balance in life and a favorable outcome.



Alvarez Sainz, M., Ferrero, A. M., & Ugidos, A. (2019). Time Management: Skills to Learn and Put into Practice. Education & Training, 61(5), 635–648.

Orhan, M. A., Castellano, S., Khelladi, I., Marinelli, L., & Monge, F. (2021). Technology distraction at work. Impacts on self-regulation and work engagement. Journal of Business Research, 126, 341–349. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2020.12.048


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posted 1 year ago (last edited 10 months ago)

Margaret Harvey Walden Instructor Manager

RE: Discussion 1 – Week 2-Holly DeKilder


Top of Form


I love your “distraction” strategy and the “Do Not Disturb” sign! I believe that is a wonderful strategy. Thank you for sharing.

I always found that visualizing my was goals helpful, especially when I became discouraged. When I was doing my doctoral studies I would make a simple pie graph and fill it in as I completed my assignments and written work. It really helped me to see how much closer I was to finishing my studies and kept me on track.

I do not know how anyone can be successful in this program without being able to manage their time and having at least fundamental ability to create a Excel spreadsheet, etc..  I think one strategy that has empowered me is the ability to use and understand technology.  During my doctoral studies, I learned how technology can improve and challenge one at the same time.

A strategy that I feel is one of the most important is that of effective communication, also. Reading writings a loud prior to posting, is something I utilized even when no one was listening to me. When I could snag someone to hearing me reading aloud, I would read some paragraphs aloud and then try to summarize what I had read aloud, as though I was teaching the content. I found this useful. Perhaps it would work for some of you, too.

Dr. Harvey


Laureate Education (Producer). (2012a). Effective online communication: Scholarly writing in online discussion [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu

Laureate Education (Producer). (2012f). Tips for effective online composition and communication [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu