How to get the best out of online learning

With the current situation, we’ve all had to get used to doing things differently, whether that’s  joining lectures from your room or no longer commuting, the pandemic has affected us all in one  way or another. Learning from home and studying remotely can be difficult but after over a year of  living in the ‘new normal', we’re sharing all our advice so you can become an online learning pro! 

1. Take regular breaks 

First and foremost, we would like to emphasise how important it is to schedule regular breaks and  take time away from your desk. We know that being at home can get repetitive but if you don’t give  yourself some time off work, you’ll hinder your productivity in the long term. We recommend using  the Pomodoro study technique, where you study for a short set of time (usually under an hour) then  take a break and repeat. This method is scientifically proven to not only improve your productivity  but your focus too. 

We also suggest that in your study breaks you should spend a bit of time away from your screens.  You could do some yoga, go on a short walk, or even prepare a bit of food. You’ll be much more energised once you return to your computer. 

2. Limit your distractions 

When studying from home it’s safe to say that there are much more distractions, especially if you’re  surrounded by family and friends. It’s a good idea to set up a designated study space where you can  benefit from some peace. If this isn’t possible then perhaps try listening to an instrumental study  playlist, you can find these on any music app such as Spotify or Apple Music. 

You probably don’t want to hear this but put that phone away when you’re studying! Even if you  don’t go on it, the sound or sight of notifications will put you off your train of thought and ruin that  attention span you’ve worked hard to create. If you’re still having trouble resisting the temptation, try downloading a notification blocker like forest or freedom. 

3. Switch up your study techniques 

When we’re constantly stuck in the same routine, studying at home can be boring but switching up  your techniques can make it more interesting! Instead of typing up your notes in a word document  why not try OneNote where you can use different backgrounds, highlighter colours and annotations.  You could also try making flashcards, quizzes, and mind maps. The choices are endless! 

4. Create an organised plan 

Have you ever heard the phrase ‘if you fail to prepare, prepare to fail’? It’s certainly true. Check out  what one of our first-year students has to say about keeping organised: 

“What helps me concentrate when I start to stress is planning what to do for the following days to  come. It helps me stay focused when I plan because it means that I am managing my time and  setting goals for myself to complete.” – Riya, Business Management student 

If you’re not sure where to start, try creating a timetable with all your lectures, seminars and  assignment deadlines. You can be creative and do this by hand or you can easily use tools such as  Google or Outlook calendar. Make sure you block out some time for rest and other activities! 

5. Actively participate!

Our fifth and final tip is all about actively participating in your online classes. We understand that the  atmosphere isn’t quite the same as a face-to-face session, but it can be made better by group  engagement. You can make the most out of your classes by using the chat feature to ask questions  and speak with your peers. Not only will it feel a bit less lonely, but you’ll also find that you’ll grasp a  better understanding of the course content. 

We hope these tips can help you get the best out of your remote learning experience. You can read  more about how our students have been finding online learning here. 

Interested in business or the creative industries? Learn about our course pathways at Pearson College London on our website.

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