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Zoom University: Staying Motivated & Organized

This is officially the first full semester of Zoom University, and even though we are just getting started, students are already losing motivation or have simply not gotten the hang of online classes. I must admit, even though I have had at least one online class every semester, I still have struggles this semester. But, that is nothing to worry about because we will all get through this together! 

To stay motivated, I remind myself that at least I don’t have to wake up an hour before class to get ready and have breakfast. Thank God, because I have 8 a.m. lectures Monday through Friday. *insert palm face emoji* 

Tips to stay organized: 

  • By now, you should have received all of your syllabi. Make sure to write down all of the due dates in your agenda or notebook. This way, you have everything in one place, and you don’t have to keep opening different files or worry about forgetting anything.
    • BONUS: add all deadlines to your phone and/or computer to get notifications and reminders days in advance, the night before or even the day of (for quizzes, tests and exams). 
  • For self-paced classes, create your own deadlines. Believe me, you do NOT want to leave everything for the last few weeks of the semester. It will be way too much work to catch up on, and you are taking away from studying for your finals. 
  • Create a folder for every class of the semester. This way, you will know where to find the documents relevant to each class.

Tips to stay motivated:

  • STUDY AREA: Personally, I find that having a clean and organized study area is the most important way to stay motivated. Also, I like to change things up. Sometimes I study in my room, but sadly, I don’t have a window, so I have to use a lamp or overhead light. When I want a more natural environment, I study in the living room, as it is the room with the biggest window and most open space. Outside of a pandemic, I would spend 90% of my study time in coffee shops! *tear face emoji*
  • ATTIRE: I know this is going to sound weird, but the way you dress WILL determine how you feel while in class or studying. If you stay in your pj’s during classes, you will feel lazy and tired. However, if you take 5-10 minutes to change your clothes, your entire mood will change. It tells your brain that you’re getting ready to do something productive. 
  • BREAKS: Take advantage of not being in face-to-face classes and take breaks. Do not try to do all of your classwork in one sitting because you will feel burnt out. The longer you go without a break, the less motivated you will feel, and you will have a harder time focusing. 
  • REWARD YOURSELF: Online classes are not easy, but we don’t have a choice. So, reward yourself for getting up and doing it everyday! Every time you complete a task, get up, move around, take a bathroom break, go make coffee or get a snack. These are all really good ways to reward yourself and stay motivated. 

If you choose to adapt any of these tips or if you have better ones, please share them with us on Instagram by tagging @hercampuswvu

Vanessa is a Venezuelan student at West Virginia University. She is majoring in Political Science, concentrating in International Relations, and minoring in Criminology. Outside of Her Campus, Vanessa serves as secretary for the International Student Organization, is a general member of the Student Government Organization and works as the event assistant at Brownfield’s office on campus. After graduation, Vanessa hopes to attend law school and graduate in Human Rights and International Law, and dreams of one day opening her own law-firm that specializes equal access to legal advice for all.
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