Bite-sized online study – my tips

30 Minutes a Month participant Talia Fiyen completed a Bachelor of Psychological Science in 2019 and shares her top tips for studying online as someone who has been there before.

Make sure not to 

Leave things to the last minute. Submitting a last-minute mediocre assignment is incredibly stressful and risky.  You can prevent this by writing out a to do list to plan in bite size pieces. For example, my psych written essay is due in week 10, therefore I should plan to get all the research done by week 5. By week 6 I should have written 200 words on Monday, another 300 words by Tuesday etc. By week 8, I should have finished editing. Set mini deadlines for yourself within realistic standards. Don’t forget to make off the completed steps with a pretty coloured pen.  

To get yourself in the study mindset

I would incorporate positive reinforcements for example, if I watch all my lectures today and complete pending tasks (bite size assessment tasks) THEN I can take my dog for a walk on the beach this afternoon. Stick by these boundaries and you are more likely to complete tasks and earn well deserved rewards.

Avoid distractions by

Putting some boundaries in place. This could be putting your phone on silent, temporary blocking social media distractions. Setting an alarm clock for 1 hour study sessions, then 10-minute break, then study works well too! There are lots of productivity apps that help as well.

The best online study aid is 

A perfectly set up space! Have the following surrounded by you: water bottle, coffee, tea, phone away, plenty of healthy snacks, a handy notepad, coloured pens! This is so that you are not tempted with a reason to get something to avoid study. Light a candle, wear comfy clothing and surround yourself with soft tunes in the background to get yourself motivated to get content done. Trust me, it works.

Feeling like you might be falling behind in your study? The Academic Learning Centre can provide you with one-on-one assistance to guide you through becoming a confident and independent learner.

The most important thing to remember is

Don’t feel overwhelmed by all the deadlines, future units and activities you have to do weeks away. It is best to start small and focus on small steps to complete all the tasks. Student life can be very overwhelming if you are looking at the big picture.

My final word of advice

Your bedroom should be a space that is associated with rest and relaxation. When you use this space to study and cram all the information, this association of a calm space becomes tainted and linked to stress and worry, which will interrupt your much needed sleep. If possible, it is best to move your desk out of your room, in the living room, kitchen table etc.

Calling all graduates! Want to give your advice to incoming students about things you wish you knew when you were studying? Alumni can sign up to the 30 Minutes a Month program and complete monthly tasks to earn rewards while assisting future students in preparing for the learning journey ahead.

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