Across the nation, college students found their academic plan derailed with the sudden and unprecedented transition to virtual distance learning. This style of education is unfamiliar to many students and presents a unique learning curve. But as the motivated, persevering student you are, we know that you can overcome any obstacle that stands between you and a degree. Here are 5 tips on how to be the best student you can be during the quarantine.
- Keep a Schedule
With our routines tossed out the window in light of recent events, it’s easy to let the days melt together as we lounge on the couch, binge season after season of our favorite shows on Netflix, and eat up all of the stock-pile snacks. Though the rest of the world may have closed up shop, classes are in full swing! Try to set a new routine where you dedicate a portion of each day to attending virtual lectures, completing assignments, and studying the material. Future you will thank you for it!
- Set Goals
Keep yourself motivated by setting academic goals for yourself. Maybe you want to aim for a perfect score on your next paper, or perhaps you want to study for ten minutes a day. Having goals helps us keep our eye on the prize and gives us something to be hopeful for, even if the world around us feels chaotic. An excellent way to set goals is to make sure your objective fits into the S.M.A.R.T. criteria. S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Based. Need some help clarifying and identifying steps towards achieving your S.M.A.R.T. goals? Connect virtually with the Student Success Center.
- Utilize Discussion Boards and Virtual Office Hours
Just because we are social distancing does not mean we cannot find ways to connect. Many online classes have discussion board features where students can engage in conversation and discuss their thoughts about the course content. Who knows what exciting connections and conversations you could start with your classmates? Not to mention that participation in discussion boards is often a graded activity, improving your G.P.A. along the way! Additionally, many professors are offering virtual office hours where you can connect online in a one-on-one capacity to discuss and clarify course work. Check out your course syllabus or message your professor to see if you can take advantage of virtual office hours!
- Study with friends
Getting together at the library or coffee shop to study may not be an option right now, but there are still ways to study with your friends! Use video messaging apps like Facetime, Skype, or Zoom to organize and participate in study groups and to catch up with friends. Other online resources, like Quizlet, allow you to make and share study materials with classmates and pals.
- Dig Deeper
Quarantine presents many of us with a unique opportunity to dig deeper into topics that interest us. Due to the increased amount of “free time” a lot of us have right now, many of us have the chance to really dive into classes or topics that we want to know more about. Writing a paper and come across an interesting article? Read it! Want to know more about something that was mentioned in a lecture? Do some research! Take advantage of your free time and discover interests and passions you may not have known about before.
Though it may look different than it has in the past, it is still possible to be a great student during distance education. Get creative, persevere through the transition, and keep your eye on that coveted degree.