The pandemic has made online learning a normal part of our education system. Measures enforced after the spread of Covid have forced a shift toward virtual learning tools and platforms, and away from the traditional classroom setting, which had become dangerously unsustainable.
As with any major change that takes place, this one, too, has come with a steep learning curve of its own. Both students and teachers have had to adjust according to the requirements of the new normal so that losses in quality of learning could be minimized.
But contrary to popular opinion, online classes aren’t anything new. The Internet isf inundated with platforms that offer online courses in almost every field.
Even before the pandemic, millions were enrolling in online courses every year to learn at their own pace, free from campus worries that are normally associated with traditional learning centers, like commuting to campus, working a job while studying, or tending to familial responsibilities.
As the global education system relies more and more on online classes, it is faced with a crisis of learning among the newly unsupervised students, which has necessitated the need for training focused on overcoming the learning challenges unique to the online medium.
Mentioned below are some key steps that will ensure focused learning during online classes:
1. Foster Curiosity
It may seem obvious that curiosity is crucial when it comes to learning, but, nonetheless, it is a point worth highlighting more than any other. Taking interest in whichever subject you are studying will help you become better at it. Education experts strive to make course content interesting by adding various fun activities to facilitate learning. If you believe you can bring out the curiosity in your students then an Online Master of Education in Curriculum and Teaching Program can be the right degree program in education for you.
Our curiosity makes us pursue things no matter how difficult they might seem. Even the driest subject can have something interesting to offer if we become curious enough about it. If you take an interest in what you study, even online learning can be quite effective.
2. Set Up a Study Space
Set up a proper study space, free from distractions and noise, equipped with a steady internet connection. It goes without saying that when you are attending online classes, you must have a fast and stable internet connection.
Studies suggest that our brain associates certain activities with the places where we perform them. If you set up a proper space to study then it becomes a cue for your brain to get into the learning mode that helps you retain more course material. Having a space to go into for studying can be of huge importance for people who find it hard to focus on what is being taught in an online Class Works.
You can put on some light ambient music in the background to help you focus better. Many people also make use of timers and candles to help ease themselves into focus. Feel free to add anything to your study space that will accentuate your focus and help you study better.
3. Define Your Study Goals
Jumping blindly into the course content without being guided by a plan is not the best decision you can take for facilitating learning. The best strategy is to divide the course content into smaller and achievable milestones.
Furthermore, set up a daily goal for yourself. Make sure that your daily goal is realistic and practical enough to be achieved within a day, otherwise, you will only get demotivated.
The purpose of a goal is to keep you on track so that you can track your progress and avoid procrastination. Keep yourself motivated toward your goals by rewarding yourself every time you achieve one of them.
The human brain is capable of achieving wonderful things through consistent effort and positive reinforcement.
4. Get Rid of the Distractions
The major hindrance to any learning environment is the presence of distractions. These distractions become even more pronounced in case of online learning. Unlike learning in a typical classroom, there is no one to supervise your focus or engagement. That lack of engagement is the number one reason behind students struggling with their learning online.
You can avoid distractions by putting your phone on silent, closing all social media tabs, and turning off pop-up notifications. Also, make sure that you are sitting comfortably so that you don’t waste time constantly adjusting your position or altogether changing places.
5. Take Active Notes
The best way to commit something to memory is to write it down. Not only will you actively learn it, but you will also be able to consult it later whenever the need arises. Note-taking is an art, and if done effectively, it can save you time during exam preparations. It also helps engage your attention and avoid distractions.
By taking notes you are making your brain become engaged in retaining information in a much-refined way.
6. Take Regular Breaks
Taking regular breaks in between your study sessions is as important as sticking to your daily study goal. Reward yourself by taking little breaks each time you complete a module or an assignment.
You can use your breaks to either check in with your progress so far and make a mental outline of what’s left, or you can use it to relax by taking a walk, talking to someone, or doing something that will uplift your energy levels.
You are not obligated to time your breaks. If you feel stuck at a particular point during your study, you can reset and come back with a fresher mind after the break.
7. Print Out Course Material
An online course does not mean that all your study material has to be online too. Printing out relevant course material means that even when you are not in front of a screen, you’ll still be able to study. Many students prefer studying from a page to glaring at a screen.
Healthwise screens badly affect our eyes, and you can save them from further damage by putting down the laptop, tablet, or mobile phone, or whatever you are using for your online class, and reading from the printouts.
The Final Advice
A particular kind of self-discipline goes into acing online learning. By avoiding distractions, taking active notes, and focusing on your study goals, you can ensure effective online learning.
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