Study Tips to Succeed in Online Learning

 

 

School supplies on desk Photo by Matt Ragland from Unsplash With this crazy semester finally coming close to its end, the last thing I am sure anyone wants to think about is the next one. However, if you’re like me, you also stumbled a few times this past semester while trying to adjust to a learning environment that is wildly different than any we’ve ever had to deal with before. Just making it through this semester is an achievement on its own! However, since spring is unlikely to be any different, there is no harm in learning from past mistakes and bettering our habits for the upcoming semester.

The habit that has benefitted me the most these past few months is organization. I cannot stress this enough! I have heard so many stories of people forgetting multiple classes, assignments, etc., which is easier to do now more than ever with almost everything being online. So, if you have not heard it from someone else, buy a planner! Once you have it, use it religiously. My planner is my best friend, and I open it probably ten times a day. At the end of each week, I spend a little bit of time writing down assignments and due dates for the next week (going through each class’ syllabus is the easiest way to do this). Also, whenever a date for a test or a project is mentioned, I write it down immediately. Do not assume you are going to remember; you most likely will not (speaking from personal experience!). Some people might prefer a digital calendar, but I like a physical one, specifically with a grid with large enough space to write down multiple assignments for each day of the week. My current one (an Erin Condren academic planner) is a little pricey but is one I recommend and will be purchasing again for myself!

Laptop and notebook Photo by Nick Morrison from Unsplash

 

The next habit I have formed that has been useful is learning self-discipline. If doing well academically is an important goal for you, one of my best tips is this: stop skipping lectures. Yes, even if they are recorded. Repeatedly missing lectures means you are less likely to be engaged while watching the class, and thus less likely to get your questions answered or to remember the content. Plus, watching a class at the scheduled time prevents you from getting behind on watching lectures. Getting behind is something I try to avoid at all costs, so getting a head start on assignments, though by no means fun, is important when possible. Even if it is just reading a page of the textbook for next week’s reading, it is one page you will not have to do later. Which brings me to another tip…do the readings for your courses. Yes, it often seems like a waste of time when there is no actual assignment to submit. However, you will internalize the content faster and spend less time studying for any exams or tests, so I always believe it to be a worthy investment. I know Twitter might lead you to believe that no one is doing their assignments, but they are!

Finally, minimize distractions as well as find what works best for your learning. A lot of people tend to like group studying, which can be beneficial in certain scenarios. For myself, I need absolute quiet to focus and get things done. Paying attention and reflecting on when you are the most productive will give you insight as to what kind of environment you need to create for yourself to produce the best results. Everyone is different, so even though I have given you some basic tips, practice different techniques and get creative with your studying. And please, please, stop checking Snapchat/Instagram/Twitter while you’re working on an assignment!