Building Better Virtual Study Habits

By Vancouver Island University Modified on November 18, 2020

Two VIU students walk you through some advice that's helped them study online, and bad habits to avoid.

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Two VIU students walk you through some advice that's helped them study online, and bad habits to avoid.

Like many students, we found the sudden move to online learning last spring to be an overwhelming experience. It was challenging to motivate ourselves to find a routine and finish our classes. But we did it and want to pass on our newfound knowledge to help other students have an easier time.

First, here are our top five bad habits that impacted our productivity when VIU moved to online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic:

1. Procrastination
2. Studying in bed during class
3. Staying in our PJs all day
4. Seeking distractions during study time, such as chatting with your roommate, going to the kitchen, etc.
5. Not following the course syllabus

Have you been guilty of doing any of these things? No judgement here, we totally get it! No need to be nervous. And now here are our top five tips on how to push through these bad habits and succeed with online learning:

Tips to master online learning

Limit distractions

Find a relaxing place that allows you to focus like outside on your deck. You should also put your phone and any other electronic devices away during class. If you absolutely need your phone, put it on silent.

Treat it like an in-person class

Get out of bed and your pajamas, take notes, ask questions, be engaged and try to keep your video on.

Stay engaged with your classmates and friends

Set up a group study session outside of class; either virtual study sessions or somewhere you can maintain physical distancing. For us, we get together with people from our cohort via Zoom a few times a week to work on assignments and chat about life.

Stay organized

Set a study schedule that works for you and do your best to stick to it. Make sure you build in time for breaks, and stick to those, too.

Follow the syllabus

It can be difficult to stay on track of due dates, especially when you are taking multiple classes at one time. The easiest way to stay on track is by using a day planner. The student’s union gives them out for free! As soon as you get the syllabus, write down the due dates for all the assignments, making sure that you include the readings and the course ID!

All the best this year,
Dayna and Kass

Dayna Stevenson is a fourth-year Tourism Management student at VIU. Before attending VIU, Dayna worked as a Lifeguard/Instructor in Campbell River, BC. She has always had a passion for recreation and knew it would be worth her while to come to VIU.

Kassandra Sime Duchesne is a fourth-year Tourism Management student from Fort Nelson, BC. When she first started at VIU she was a Biology student but decided that the sciences were not for her. In addition to her studies, she is a member of the VIU dance team and is on the Recreation and Tourism Association executive team.


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