The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed the way education works. In-person classes are no longer seen as feasible, even in the near future, as this could increase the risk of infections among students and teachers alike. This being said, the educational system adapted to the new normal situation by shifting to distance learning. However, due to the unprecedented scenario, there are bound to be challenged in learning efficiently and effectively.
Distance learning can be convenient for many students. However, it also presents unique challenges, especially if you are not prepared. If you are looking for ways to develop your skills for effective and efficient online classes, there are a few things to set yourself up for success and take full advantage of all online learning has to offer. Continue reading to learn more about these.
Distance learning means getting to study at home conveniently. However, this also means facing many distractions. From social media, chores, to family responsibilities — these can all easily derail your focus in online classes.
Knowing exactly what to do for these distractions will depend on your unique situation. Some students may find it distracting to focus on noisy family members. Others might find it distracting being asked to do chores every now and then. To learn effectively, know how to eliminate these distractions and set aside time to focus.
Take away sources of loud noises and remind your family you have online classes. Divert your focus fully on what you are learning. Regardless of the distraction, you are dealing with, remember to stay away from social media. To avoid checking every notification, try downloading a website blocker or switch your phone to silent mode.
Hold Yourself Accountable
The first thing you need to realize is that online classes do not exactly make learning. It has a clear learning curve and you will have to develop your skills constantly to fully adjust. For this reason, you have to constantly remind yourself to be accountable and practice self-disciplined to focus on the tasks.
In the traditional classroom setting, you will often receive verbal or visual reminders of upcoming due dates. For online classes, there is no teacher actively reminding you from time to time about each task. It is up to you to dedicate your time and complete the work.
If you are having trouble holding yourself accountable, pair up with a fellow classmate. Remind each other to be organized, aware, proactive about deadlines.
Create A Schedule
To stay on track with your online class tasks, ensure that you remember what you have to do. Create a schedule. List down the assignments and projects regularly.
The ability to create a schedule and have solid time management skills is highly advantageous in online classes. Without these, you might find yourself cramming every time, handing in subpar classwork, or worse not learning effectively.
Look at the syllabus at the start of the semester and note the assignments. It can be an excellent road map for your schedule. Have a weekly schedule to follow which states time for listening to lectures, completing assignments, and participating in group work. Lastly, check-in with your progress. Look at how you are spending time. Ask yourself if you are spending enough time studying. A little self-reflection can go a long way for online classes.
Have A Dedicated Study Space
Having a dedicated study space will also help you stay on top of learning for online classes. By doing your tasks there regularly, you will begin to develop a routine. Determine which area of the house can have a quiet environment and where you can easily grab your school supplies. It’s important to determine what type of setting will boost your productivity.
When setting up a dedicated study space, make sure you:
- Have a high-speed internet connection
- Have the required study materials
- Have a reliable laptop or computer
- Have headphones for listening to lectures
Make sure to participate in the activities in class to help you learn effectively. Engage with fellow classmates and ask your teachers questions. This may involve asking classmates about a project you’re working on or clarifying with your teacher about certain course-related questions. Take advantage of break-out group works as well.
If you do feel yourself falling behind, do not hesitate to speak up. Do not wait until an assignment is due before reporting issues. Email your teacher and be proactive all the time.
Online classes can offer convenience to help you fulfill academic goals with safety in mind. Though they come with their own unique challenges, following the advice above can help you learn efficiently and effectively despite distance learning.
Make sure you hold yourself accountable, eliminate distractions, create a schedule, have a dedicated study space, and actively participate to accomplish your tasks.