It is never fun being saddled up next to someone that hits on every pet peeve on your list. When you’re in the online environment at least you have the geographic distance of some of your physical annoyances, but what about cyber pet peeves? Perhaps you hate when people write super long discussion posts, or sign their name at the end of every comment. Since most online classrooms already time, date, and name stamp responses that’s a bit redundant anyway right? Regardless of what’s on your list you need to leave it at the classroom door.
What is important in the online environment is the sharing of ideas, concepts, and information. It is hard to do that when a few of your classmates get on your nerves. We think just because we’re online that these irritants are camouflaged, but it’s just the opposite. Sometimes people feel more empowered in the online medium, which is great for sharing information, bad for releasing a steady stream of annoying personality traits. Just like you were told to not “judge a book by its cover” the same should be said for judging classmates too early.
One of my pet peeves is typos. Show me one typo and it turns me off for a good while. In the online classroom you may be graded down already by the professor, but remember that we all make mistakes. Sometimes you go to type in a response and hit the enter key too early. It has happened to us all at least once. There are also times when there is that one student that seems like an overachiever and is making the rest of you look bad in class. Don’t sour toward them just because they put in the extra effort. Perhaps they don’t have a full-time job like you, or don’t have an outlet to communicate with others. It isn’t fair to not assist them in the classroom just because they seem like a suck-up.
Typically I would advise that you make a list and focus on moving these bad habits or pet peeves off of the list. In this case don’t write anything down. It’s better to not focus on the negative and instead zero in on the task at hand. Worry about your classwork and connecting with your peers. Don’t let your hangups get in the way of valuable potential connections.
By J. Mason
Online Learning Tips Editor