Transitioning from a traditional face-to-face lecture class to an online platform can be challenging, especially when the change is abrupt. You are probably used to studying with classmates on campus. Or maybe you have developed a favorite study spot to help you focus. Now, being confined to the four walls surrounding you, the transition to online schoolwork might feel stressful. As you are forced to adapt to a new learning environment, it is necessary to develop new habits that help you succeed. Here are some tips to help you increase your productivity and focus on your schoolwork from home.
Set a Schedule and Checklist
Schedules are extremely helpful when it comes to time management. Chances are, you have multiple assignments or tasks that need your attention every day. Schedules act as a guide to help you use your time effectively. I find it extremely helpful to make a daily schedule—that way I don’t wake up at noon or forget about important assignments. A daily schedule keeps me accountable and helps me mentally prepare for the tasks that need to be completed. Schedules do not necessarily need to be followed to the exact minute, but having an idea of when tasks should be completed is a great way to stay focused.
Checklists are another great tool to use for completing your assignments. I am a huge fan of checklists because they motivate me to be more productive and to get the work done. Having a visual list, much like a schedule, is a simple and effective way to stay focused on finishing your schoolwork.
Designate a Workspace for Schoolwork
One thing I already miss about campus is my study spot. The campus was full of spaces that made studying comfortable and effective. Whenever I went to those study spaces, I felt more productive and purposeful. Unfortunately, this may not be the case at home. One way to duplicate a study space at home is to designate a place that is meant only for schoolwork and studying. Create an atmosphere that helps you focus. Your space should have everything you need to complete your schoolwork. When choosing a study space, think about factors like lighting, sound, and comfort. These small details can make a big difference when it comes to studying more efficiently.
Create a Distraction-Free Zone
Many traditional face-to-face classes are technology free to help eliminate classroom distractions. The same principle should be applied when doing schoolwork at home. A few simple ways to reduce distractions are:
- Put your phone on “do not disturb” or silent.
- Turn off the TV.
- Go to a room without other people.
- Close other webpages and social media apps (such as Instagram, Facebook, etc.) so you don’t get notifications during study time.
Now that you are doing your schoolwork online, it is important to identify any factors that can be a study distraction, such as noisy siblings, roommates, or pets. A simple conversation or reminder that you need quiet time goes a long way to help create a distraction-free zone.