In today’s digital age, many students are turning to online education for the flexibility and
convenience it offers. But there is a common concern: How do you forge meaningful
connections and friendships in a virtual environment?
While the setting might be different, the human need for social connection remains the same. Read on as we discover practical ways to build
these connections, even when you’re studying from the comfort of your home.
Embrace Digital Communication Platforms
When you can’t meet in person, tools like Zoom, Skype, and Microsoft Teams become your best
friends. Whether you’re studying an online degree for psychology, business, nursing, or something
else, they offer more than just a space for virtual lectures.
Organize study groups
Initiate a study group and invite your classmates. Not only will it
help academically, but it also offers a chance to get to know your peers and find people who
have things in common.
It doesn’t always have to be study related. Organize a movie night or a virtual coffee chat to discuss hobbies, interests, and life outside of school.
Participate in Online Forums and Discussions
Most online courses have dedicated forums or discussion boards. Here’s how to make the most of
Start by sharing a little about who you are, your interests, and what you
hope to gain from the course.
Respond to others’ posts, ask questions, and provide insights. It’s a great
way to start conversations and find like-minded peers.
Join Online Clubs or Organizations
Just like traditional schools, many online institutions offer clubs or organizations centered around
Seek out clubs
Explore what your institution offers. Whether it’s a book club, a coding group, or a sustainability committee, there’s likely something that piques your interest.
Start your own
If you can’t find a group that aligns with your interests, why not start one? It could be the perfect way to meet people who share your passion.
Connect on Social Media
Social media platforms can be a bridge to genuine friendships:
Follow school pages: Universities and institutions often have official pages on platforms like
Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. By following them, you can stay updated on events and
engage with fellow students.
Create or join groups: There are many student groups specific to online courses or
universities. Get involved and start interacting!
Attend Virtual Events
Many online schools host virtual events, ranging from webinars to workshops:
RSVP and show up
Attending these events can introduce you to new faces and topics of
Engage during the event
Participate in Q&A sessions, interact in chat boxes, or even
suggest topics for future events.
Building friendships as an online student might require a slightly different approach, but it’s entirely
possible. By proactively engaging in virtual spaces, participating in discussions, and seeking out or
creating opportunities to connect, you’ll find that the digital realm is brimming with potential pals.
Remember, it’s all about taking that first step to reach out and connect.