6 Tips for Effective Communication in Online Courses

The ability to communicate effectively is a skill that will serve you well in online courses and beyond. When you can express yourself clearly and concisely, you are more likely to be taken seriously as an educated individual. In addition, clear communication can help prevent misunderstandings and conflict. Here are six tips to help you communicate effectively in your online courses.

6 Tips for Effective Communication in Online Courses
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Use clear and concise language

When writing an assignment or posting on a discussion board, use language that is sure whether a word is easy to understand. Avoid using complex terms or acronyms unless they are commonly understood, look it up in a dictionary, or ask a friend. People pursuing an online communications degree should be efficient with words and use them to their advantage. Communications today mean that something is being transferred in a way that is interesting and impactful.

Use strong verbs

When composing your thoughts, use strong verbs to convey your message. For example, rather than writing “I think,” write “I believe.” This will make your statements sound more confident. It may take some time and practice but try to go through everything you write and substitute the words that seem generic and have a  meaningful substitute, without changing the meaning of the message. Having a phrase dictionary on your side can make a change once you are finishing your work.

Be specific

When you make a point, support it with specific evidence. For example, rather than saying that you don’t like a certain teacher, say why you don’t like them. Rather than writing “The assignment was too hard,” explain what made it difficult for you. This type of specificity will help your classmates and instructors understand your points better. Using this approach in writing any thesis or argument will help you build up an opinion with the supporting sentences and arguments. Even when you are voicing a completely individual and personal view, it will make it more objective and people will respond better to it.

Be mindful of tone

Your tone of voice can be just as important as the words you use when communicating online. Avoid being condescending, argumentative, or rude. Be respectful of your classmates and instructors, even if you disagree with them. Remember that online communication can be easily misinterpreted, so always try to express yourself in a way that is open and positive.


It’s important to take the time to check your spelling and grammar before submitting an assignment or posting on a discussion board. Typos and mistakes can make you look unprofessional and careless. If you’re not confident in your grammar skills, there are plenty of resources available online to help you improve. By taking the time to proofread your work, you can ensure that your communication is clear and error-free.

Structure sentences correctly

Sentences that are properly structured are easier to understand than those that are not. When you’re writing an assignment or posting on a discussion board, be sure to use proper sentence structure and grammar. This will make your writing more concise and coherent. If you’re not sure how to 'build' a sentence, there are plenty of resources available online to help you.

These are just a few tips for communicating effectively in online courses. Following these tips will help you build better relationships with your classmates and instructors, and will make your coursework more manageable. Good luck!

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