By Samantha Iniguez
Taking online classes takes a lot more discipline than face-to-face classes, but it doesn’t need to be so difficult if you take into consideration the following tips.
An important key to being successful taking an online class is time-management. Without it, students could easily fall behind in a course. It’s best to stay ahead of deadlines and avoid stress.
One way to do this is to input deadlines into computers and phone calendars as well as turning on Canvas notifications. When students know the weekly schedule of their classes, they could break down assignments throughout the week and the day so that students are constantly working on assignments instead of leaving it to the last minute.
It has been proven that breaking up information and studying in smaller chunks makes information easier to memorize. According to Exam Study Expert, a blog that teaches students how to use memory science and productivity psychology to revolutionize the way they study states on an online article, “chunking helps you overcome the natural limitations of your memory, and is therefore a very powerful trick for helping you to learn information and get into memory.”
The blog says, “The APA dictionary psychology defines ‘chunking’ as ‘the process by which the mind divides large pieces of information into smaller units (chunks) that are easier to retain in short-term memory…one item in memory can stand for multiple other items.”
It is important that students find a quiet place to work, free of distraction. If it is at home, students should share with their family that they are working on their schoolwork and should not be bothered until they’re done. Students should also place their phones on silent and out of reach.
Taking breaks is important to learning as well. Students should take 5-10 minutes breaks in between studying to give their mind a break. Staring at a screen for long hours every day could be tiring so they should use this time to step outside and get some fresh air, eat a snack or just relax for a couple minutes.
Another important key to success is note taking. It has been proven that taking notes longhand rather than on a computer helps students memorize information. According to an article published in, Psychological Science, Pam Mueller, PhD, and Daniel Oppenheimer, PhD, conducted three experiments that studied how students retain information when taking notes on paper versus with a computer, and students that took notes using computers did worse than students taking notes longhand when answering conceptual questions.
Students should also connect with others. Just because classes are online doesn’t mean that students can’t talk to their professor, other students and net tutors. In order to understand certain assignments and lessons better class discussion is required. Luckily canvas allows students to message classmates as well as professors to ask for further explanation.
Canvas has a Net tutoring service which aids students in: English and literature, FYE and College Student Success, math (algebra, basic math and pre-calculus), math (calculus and above), math (in Spanish), math (statistics and probability).
The service offers the opportunity to talk with a live tutor, drop off a question and return later to see how a tutor solved the problem and a locker where all past videos of previous tutoring sessions and feedback from questions are stored for you to review.
Among the concern’s students had about classes moving online was the lack of internet access from home but some students may qualify for two months of free internet.
Telecommunications company, Comcast, is expanding its affordable internet service, Internet Essentials, to provide free internet to low-income families. Their website says, “Effective Monday, March 16, 2020, new Internet Essentials customers will receive two free months of Internet service. We are also increasing the speed of the program to 25 Mbps downloads, and 3 Mbps uploads for all new and existing customers.”
The website says applicants will qualify if: “You are eligible for public assistance programs such as the National School Lunch Program, Housing Assistance, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI and others. You do not have outstanding debt to Comcast that is less than a year old.
Families with outstanding debt more than one year old may still be eligible. They live in an area where Comcast Internet service is available but have not subscribed to it within the last 90 days.”
According to the website, “Some applicants could be instantly approved while others may be asked to send in supporting documents. If approved, you will receive a Welcome Kit and Internet equipment in 7-10 business days.”
For more information go on how to get two free months of internet go to https://internetessentials.com/covid19.