Internet is well known nowadays, however higher distance education students who live in remote rural areas still have not been able to take advantages of this medium optimally for their learning process. For accessing the internet the students have to be available with the minimum prerequisites: the existence of adequate devices and the sufficient capabilities. For education purposes, the students use the internet to meet their information and fulfill learning needs, facilitate interpersonal communications, and provide groups of discussion, as well as to be connected with friends in social media. This study aims to analyze the relationship between internet access and usage in improving students' self-directed learning which is using structural equation model method. The survey is conducted in seven districts in Surakarta Regional Office of Indonesia Open University with a sample size of 320 respondents. The result shows that the internet usage is still low due to limited internet facilities that affect the knowledge and willingness of students to access the internet. The strategy in improving student internet usage is applying social media as guidance that can be accessed through cellular phones.