With CU doing a mix of online, remote, in-person, and hybrid classes this fall, this may be the first time doing online and remote learning for many. Things are going to be different for sure, but online learning is nothing to be intimidated by. With a little time management and some tips and tricks along the way, you’re bound to succeed. Here are six pieces of advice for tackling online classes this semester!
- Start off on the right foot.
From the very beginning, treat online and remote classes just as you would an in-person class. Make sure you read the syllabus, make sure you attend classes or ‘zoom in’, and don’t start off with the mindset that a class is less important because it isn’t in person.
- Get dressed.
I know this sounds dumb and pointless when attending online classes, but it actually makes such a difference. When classes first went online last semester, I found myself rolling out of bed just in time for class, not putting on real clothes, not brushing my hair, nothing. This genuinely led me to feeling like I was in a slump. People sometimes say if you look better and take care of yourself, you’ll feel better, and I’ve found that to be 100 percent true. So take the extra 10 minutes to get dressed and ready; again, treat online class just how you would in-person classes.
- Actively participate and ask questions.
This is a good habit to have for any class, but it’s especially important when it comes to online and remote learning. Actively participating not only helps you to stay engaged in the class, but also makes it easier to meet people as you seem more approachable and confident. Plus, it makes you look good in the eyes of the professor.
- Set one day to go over upcoming deadlines.
Choose a day of the week where you don’t have as much going on and take the time to look over upcoming assignments and deadlines. For me, this day is Saturday. I like to sit down and go over my tasks for the week and gauge how much time I should set aside for doing work or if I need to start working on assignments in advance. It’s just a good way of figuring out your plan of attack for the coming weeks, and helps you to not lose sight of everything as those reminders from professors on deadlines tend to disappear.
- Take notes.
If I’ve learned anything from doing remote learning last semester, it’s that teachers tend to put emphasis on material covered in class - not just what’s in the book. This will also force you to stay tuned into classes, helping you to actually absorb the information and material being covered.
- Know your limits and take breaks.
Your health is always the number one priority. I’m not advocating skipping class, and if anything, online school makes it easier to participate even when you’re feeling poorly, but don’t be afraid to give your brain a break every now and then. With online classes and working from home, there’s no clear distinction between school life and home life, which can make it seem like you can’t escape from your classes. Not to mention that looking at a computer for hours on end can make your brain hurt. So step away from the computer, take a break, maybe go outside, and just reset.
Online and remote learning might not be how you imagined college classes, but it does have its perks. It’s a unique experience for sure, but at the end of the day it’s just another accomplishment under your belt and can even help prepare you for things to come.