It’s no secret that the way we study and learn has changed drastically over the past year with online classes. For some people, that change was easy and simple, and they might have even thrived. For others, that was not the case. If you fall into the latter category (as do I), that is nothing to be ashamed of. Here are some of the tips I learned during virtual classes that I think will serve me well once we return in-person:
- Dual monitors. If you have the resources, I highly recommend adopting at least two computer monitors to complete your work. Not only has it helped immensely during Zoom classes to be able to access my work on one screen and the meeting on the other, but it also makes homework easier since I can look at my assignment and the instructions at the same time. Homework will not go away once we return in-person, so why not make it a bit easier on yourself with dual monitors?
- Reward yourself. I had already used rewards (candy, TV, video games, etc.) to motivate myself before the shift to online learning, and I can easily say that it has been one of the biggest factors towards my continued success. It’s difficult to sit in front of a camera for five to eight hours for class, then another six for homework, all while not being able to hang out with friends or do other extracurricular activities. Treating myself to a sweet treat, a TV show, or a book is a great way to keep myself focused because I know I will have earned it once I finish my work.
- Make a plan. I’ve always been an organized person, but with the craziness that has come with this year, I’ve found myself writing things down and planning out my work more often. It helps me to see what I need to do when everything else seems random and unpredictable. I have a planner for weekly assignments and readings, and a whiteboard to keep track of long-term projects or tasks for my job. I can’t imagine going back to school without these tools.
Of course, everyone has different ways of motivating themselves and being successful. You should always do whatever works best for you, but if you’re not sure what that is, I hope these tips inspired you.