UCLA has mainly been an in-person learning university with the exception of some programs so the recent shift to remote learning can be a huge adjustment for both students and faculty alike. Here are some tips to help you make a smooth transition to your new remote learning environment:
1. Be Disciplined.
Just as you would in a regular in-person course, you have to be disciplined enough to attend your class and pay attention just as you would in a lecture hall. Set aside times to study for your courses and although you might have the flexibility to do things on your own time, make sure to still keep up with your coursework and allocate both reading and assignment time. Remember that despite the course being moved to a remote platform, you are still paying tuition and working to further your education. Treat your remote learning course just like you would a face-to-face course and you’ll already be on the right track!
2. Create a Routine.
Remote learning is not only an adjustment from a technological point of view but also requires a lifestyle change. Make sure that you have a quiet designated study space in your current environment. This can be a kitchen table, a desk in the home office, or even your couch. Experiment and see which area works best for you! Regardless of your space of choice, make sure that you have access to high-speed internet so that you are not learning via a slow lagging connection. By studying in the same place every day you will begin to create a routine and associate that place with your studies. Make sure to stay organized and keep all of your necessary supplies ( textbooks, laptop charger, notebooks and pens) handy.
3. Eliminate Distractions.
Being at home presents a lot of potential distractions. You may be tempted by putting on a tv show “in the background”, social media, all the snacks in your kitchen and even doing your laundry to avoid your assigned course readings. The most successful online students are able to tune out distractions and focus on their studies. The level at which you are able to do this will depend on your own personality. For some, tuning out your noisy surroundings is as simple as turning on some music, whereas for others the problem might be needing more willpower. There are small things you can do to help yourself focus better if that is the case. For example, if you know that TV is tempting for you, use watching an episode of your favorite show as a reward for finishing your assignments for the day. This can serve as a motivator for you. Come up with your own reward system and explore your ability to tune out distractions.
4. Figure Out What Works For You.
You may already have done this during your time at UCLA, but figuring out whether you work best by studying with a group, studying alone, in the morning or at night, can be extremely beneficial. Carry these strategies with you through this experience! Where there is a will, there is a way! You can still have Zoom or Google Hangouts study groups, facetime a study buddy, and even screen share your notes with classmates if you’re a group studier! Make sure to add this into your daily routine!
5. Be Engaged.
You only get what you put into this online experience, so make sure to be engaged in your courses! Participate just as you would in a face-to-face environment and you will be making the most of your online experience. If you have a question during the lecture, ask! Your Professors will be thrilled to have an engaged student. If your course has online modules, be sure to complete them and participate in any online forums to create connections with your fellow classmates. You never know how helpful those forum connections can turn out to be!
6. Be Calm.
This has been a time of constant change but one thing to remember is to keep calm and know that you are a part of a community of resilient, compassionate and inspiring Bruins. Your university is here for you and happy to support you and your needs during this time. If you have any questions reach out to Partnership UCLA | Alumni Career Programs.