Helping students achieve success

Parents, mentors and schools all have roles in helping students stay on task and be successful.

Parents and their role
As a parent, your role in helping your student decide if online learning is the most effective way for him/her to learn is extremely important. According to the State School Aid Act, you must give your permission for your student to take online classes. Before you sign off, you need to have determined if your student is well suited to online learning. Review MVU’s Parent Guide to Online Learning for information on online learning, Michigan's Online Course Catalog and other resources.

A guide for students
MVU’s Student Guide to Online Learning is for middle and high school students who are interested in taking courses online. Most of the content comes from teachers, mentors and students who have personal experience with online teaching and learning. Parents use the guide with their students to explore online learning.

Mentors and their role
Onsite mentors are critical partners in ensuring student success in navigating the virtual learning journey. Mentors provide that personal connection for students, build trusting relationships and help them to become successful online learners. Mentors are one more adult who knows the student and provides perspective and support.

Typically, mentors are certified teachers. A parent is usually the mentor for home-schooled students. For more information about mentors, download Mentor Fundamentals: A Guide for Mentoring Online Learners.

Tasks of the mentor include:

  • Serve as the local “eyes and ears” for the online instructor
  • Track student progress
  • Communicate with the MVS online instructor, school administration and parents
  • Address any concerns to MVS staff and the help desk 
  • Assign final grade to the student after the percentile score is submitted by the online instructor 
  • Help student stay on track and successfully progress through the course

What is a mentor? »

Characteristics of successful online learners

Self-motivated
Students who can direct their own learning environment, fulfill course requirements and achieve individual academic success.

Independent learner
The online environment enables students to learn at their own pace, whether it’s traditional, extended or accelerated, relieving the stress of feeling rushed or pressured and providing enjoyment in the learning process.

Computer literate
Although it’s not necessary to have advanced computer skills, students should possess a working knowledge of electronic email, the Internet and basic keyboarding skills.

Time management
Students must be able to organize and plan their own best “time to learn.” There is no one best time for everyone, but the key to learning is to commit the time to learn.

Effective writing skills
Students must use electronic email to communicate with their peers as well as their instructors. The ability to write clearly in order to communicate ideas and assignments is very important to student success as well as a means to inform instructors of any concerns or problems.

Personal commitment
Since there are no bells that begin and end classes, students must have a strong desire to learn and achieve knowledge and skills via online courses. Making a commitment to learn in this manner is a very personal decision and requires a strong commitment to participate in order to achieve academic success.