Whether you’re taking a few courses online or you’re enrolled full time at one of the top online colleges, you may find it difficult to go the nontraditional route as an online student. You won’t see your professors every day, which makes it easier to shirk student responsibilities. You won’t have a campus to seek refuge for some peace and quiet. And you won't be turning in any assignments that were scribbled down while you were waiting in the hall for class to start. If you’re an online student building on your education by getting a new degree, or if you’re new to the college game and went the online route for convenience, there are five ways to ensure your success while taking online classes.
1. Set up an area to “go” to your online classes and to study:
If your space will be in your home, make sure the area you choose is quiet and separated from the main living areas. If you live with other people (your spouse, children, or roommates), try to put your desk in a room with a door that locks. Otherwise, you’ll have someone poking in every ten to fifteen minutes. Coffee shops and public libraries can also make great online college campuses. You can sustain yourself with coffee, get some free wifi and have access to online essay writing services and ton of books on your subject.
2. Set a schedule and stick to it:
At the beginning of the semester, set up a class schedule and a study schedule. Pretend you’re going to actual classes that have set times. If you schedule your online class for three o’clock be at your designated area at three o’clock on the dot. One of the challenges with taking online classes is that it’s easy to get distracted or burnt out and procrastinate doing the online coursework. One of the keys to success in online college is sticking to your schedule.
3. Get familiar with your online resources:
Do several Google searches and look for resources you can use for your online classes. Make sure these resources are approved by your professor.
4. Dress for success:
It’s easy to think that if you’re taking online classes that you can throw on your jammies and head for the couch. But what you choose to wear has a lot to do with your attitude. You’ll take your online classes more seriously if you’re dressed like you would for a traditional college class.
5. Sit up straight:
Good posture is associated with a longer attention span, higher test scores and less fatigue. It’s especially important to sit upright when you’re taking online classes. The act of sitting, staring at a computer screen and typing all day can be stressful for your body. By sitting up straight, you’ll lose less energy and you’ll be able to use that on what’s really important: engaging in your online classes.
We’ve all faced the times when we have to be focused on the task at hand, but can’t seem to muster the concentration needed to complete the task to the degree of quality necessary. While you can never fully eliminate this annoying speed bump to success, you can do things to curb its influence over your day.
Eat For Your Brain
Everyone knows that when you eat better, you feel better. If you make sure to put the best things into your body, you can be sure your body can perform at it’s best level, and the brain is no exception. Foods like blueberries, salmon, flaxseed and coffee in moderation are a great start. You should consider following natural foods blog to help you come up with delicious ways to feed your brain the nutrients it needs to be at 100%.
The Five-More Rule
This is a great one once you get used to it. Anytime you find yourself in the middle of a particularly draining task and you feel that you’d rather stick hot bamboo shoots under your fingernails than spend one more moment working on it, force yourself to do five more. Weather you’re reading a boring book, or working on math problems. If you can force yourself to do just five more before you decide to take a break, you’ll be even closer to accomplishing the task when you come back to it later.
Also you should know that some foods are said to have positive impacts on a college student‘s ability to study, but there are just as many foods out there that can have a negative impact. If you want to get the most out of your study sessions, you need to know which snacks to avoid. Here are five foods you don’t want to eat come study time.
Spicy foods will mess with your stomach and cause you to make instant bathroom runs. (Yes, that would be runs because of runs) you may love the
chili sauce, but you need to reserve that for another time. The last thing you want is an upset stomach while studying.
Turkey is very heavy, and it is guaranteed to make you sleepy. Try a different meat instead or eat a nice salad. This may not sound as delicious, but it will definitely help you study.
Bread is highly absorbent, so it will soak up anything you drink after eating it. This will make your stomach feel incredibly full, which will either cause a tummy ache or make you very sleepy. Try to eat crackers instead of bread. They’re not quite as absorbent, and they still taste great with most sandwich toppings.
This is more of a mess standpoint than anything else. Potato chips are inherently greasy, and they’re bound to make a mess all over your books. Stick with crackers or at the very least baked chips if you want to maintain some shred of cleanliness.
The sugar high from candy may be great, but it comes with a crash you won’t want. Try to each fruit instead because it contains natural sugars. Apples, oranges, pomegranates and more are all great for staying alert, and they will keep you awake or a longer period of time. Avoid eating gummy bears until after your test. Then you can pig out all you want.
I’m a huge supporter of using your free time to study. I think that is a wise thing to do, and I would never discourage anyone from doing so. However, I do know the damage that can come from over-studying. If you work yourself to the bone just to retain information, you are eventually going to explode. This article is written for the overachievers out there that just can’t seem to put the books down. You have to use your break to actually take a break. Here are a few reasons why it may be time to step away from the books long enough to enjoy your time off.
Avoiding a Huge Burnout
I used to be a workaholic, more so than I am now. I would literally get two hours a sleep at night just trying to juggle my architecture classes and work load at the same time. Eventually, it all got to be too much for me and just gave up on everything. It has taken me over a year to get back at a steady pace I can be proud of. That is what is known as a burnout my friends, and it is something you definitely want to avoid experiencing in the future. The less stressed you are now, the less likely you are to burnout early on.
Resting the Mind
If you want to be able to actually study for your courses when the next semester rolls around, you need to let your mind rest. You can only shove so much in there for so long. Eventually you have to pull the plug. By giving your mind a break, you will essentially clear out the storage space to make room for more information. Then you can actually study in the future without getting a major headache the second you look at the books. Take a break for now, and then you can get back to your studies when school starts.
Enjoying the Memories
As a college student, you likely don’t get to spend much time with your family. That is one of the downsides of being an adult. You just don’t get a chance to make the same memories you made as a child. If you take your break and actually use it the way it is supposed to be used, you will be able to make some of those memories again. You may not make as many as you did when you were a child, but you will have something to look back on.
Remembering the Past
This is also a good time to look back on holidays in the past and remember all the good times you shared with your family. Most people do not take enough time to reflect on their lives while they are in school because they are too busy focusing on their careers. You should take a break from all that and remember just how great your life used to be. I know this is getting a little on the mushy side, but you would be surprised by how much of a boost you can get from those memories. They may help you do better in the life you are living now.
Take this opportunity to truly enjoy the break you have. You don’t get many of them in school, and none of them are as long as the one you have now. By using your time wisely, you will have the best chance at studying well whenever you get back to school. Enjoy the holidays. The happiness is on the house.