Got the Coronavirus blues? Studying for online classes isn't an easy task for most students. Learning how to limit distractions and focus at home is essential in being a successful online student.
Here are four simple study tips that can play a key role in helping you earn high grades in your online classes.
1. Find a quiet place
One of the first steps in taking online classes is finding a quiet place for you to study in and listen to your classroom lectures. Whether it is your bedroom, at the local library, or in a dedicated home office, a space free of distractions is essential in helping you focus.
It is also important to have access to high-speed internet: A slow internet connection can make watching classroom videos an exercise in frustration.
2. Create a daily schedule
Another simple step is to create a daily study routine. Developing a schedule makes it easier for you to find time to study while also making you feel less overwhelmed or stressed out. A daily schedule is even more important when studying for online classes because no one is forcing you to pay attention and do your work.
You can plan your day in advance while setting short-term and long-term goals for yourself. Over time, your study routine will feel natural and can play a key role in helping you earn high grades for all of your online classes.
Your schedule should include short breaks every hour or so, and should also allow for longer blocks of time when you’re at the gym, working outside the home, or spending time with friends.
You’ll of course have to be flexible enough to allow for changes, especially around midterms and finals; other than that, you’ll have a pretty good overview of what the next few months look like.
3. Turn off your phone
Smartphones make our lives much easier and offer countless benefits. However, a smartphone can easily distract you from studying and make it much more difficult to concentrate on your class.
Simply checking your social media for a few minutes can turn into an hour without you even realizing it. Turning your phone off (and leaving it in another room to avoid temptation) is a great way to maximize your focus and helps you to avoid wasting time.
The benefits of keeping your phone turned off throughout the day can extend far beyond just productivity. Lowering your phone usage is great for keeping up with your mental health as well.
4. Ask for help
Your professor and teaching assistants are available to you in your online classes as they would be in person. Always feel free to reach out with any questions related to a lecture or assignment. Sending a quick email is an excellent way to gain clarification on any topic.
Many classes also have an online forum, which is another resource you can take advantage of both to learn more about a particular topic and also to interact with fellow students.
Bonus tip: Kick procrastination to the curb
If you tend to put off assignments until the last minute (like we all do), your grades might suffer and your stress level will certainly skyrocket. One way to stop procrastinating is to do just one easy sub-task: If it’s an essay, draw up a point-form outline; if it’s a group project, schedule a date to discuss who does what. Once you’ve accomplished that first step, the next will be easier and you’ll be on your way to completion.