From two weeks off to fully online class, COVID-19 has made all levels of schooling different and difficult. Will the instructor update on Monday? When will my paper be graded? Aw, crap it’s 11:15 and the assignment is due at midnight…. Every week seemed to bring new and confusing issues to college life, and nothing seemed greater than the end of the fall semester. But, it is only a few short weeks until the end of Winter Break, so here are 5 ways to stay productive in college during quarantine:
1. Up And At ‘Em
College during quarantine? Means online school. Online college has quickly turned into no structure, no meet times, no nothing – just a list of the week’s assignments posted on Monday and due on Sunday. So, here are a few things you can do to keep motivated and feel just as gratified as your college life continues virtually:
A. Get up around the same time every morning.
Just as you did in high school or college before COVID, keeping to a schedule will help you feel awake and motivated to get work done.
B. Get dressed, even if it is just jeans and a t-shirt.
As tempting as it may be, staying in your PJs is not the way to go. Staying in your PJs on the weekend was the joy of childhood because it meant we had nothing to do but lie around and watch cartoons. So, though you may be at home, your mind is conditioned that being in clothes means productivity.
C. Have a designated workspace.
To be honest, this is one I need to get better at, (as I am currently writing this article on my laptop while I lie in bed with my cat). But this past semester I spent most of my school time downstairs at the dining table, fully spread out, functional, and productive. Just as you would have gone to class or as you would go to your place of employment, having a separation between comfort and work is important to the psyche and will keep you more efficient and fruitful.
2. So Many Hours In A Day
Aforementioned, on Monday morning, students are faced with twenty-plus hours’ worth of work due by Sunday at midnight – no structure, no meet times… no nothing. This is a blessing and a curse. Yes, we have seven days to do everything that needs to be done, which is five times more than needed, but, without structure, it can easily fall off the backburner and be pushed until Sunday evening. So, it is extremely important that you regulate yourself and keep yourself on track – you get to fully determine what kind of college life you have. Whether it is using your phone calendar or a physical planner, it is important to map out how and when you are going to do schoolwork. Tell friends and family, that way they can hold you responsible and ask about your progress. And, if you also have a job, you can build your schedule around it to make sure your week as successful as possible.
3. Take A 15
I had to take a “Freshman seminar” my first year and it was mostly a bust. Either things that I had already known by going through orientation or what I deem as common sense, was retaught to me once a week for an hour. But, one thing that was repeated often over the length of the course was not to push yourself too hard or overwhelm yourself. Before quarantine, most college classes were held between one to two hours, one to two times a week. Then, it was anticipated for each student to spend three to four extra hours at home doing work and preparing for the next class. That means a full-time student spent twenty-plus hours a week participating in college life on campus, the library, and at home. But now that we are in quarantine? It is all at home, so it is important to break things down into bite-sized pieces. I schedule myself to do two classes a day over two days, giving myself a lunch break in between courses. That way I don’t feel overwhelmed nor rushed and can give all my attention to each course.
4. Positive Reinforcement
There is absolutely nothing wrong with a little positive reinforcement and conditioning yourself as you do online schooling. College life in general should be full of happy and good things to keep yourself motivated for the long haul. If you are keeping up with the early points, it would be even more beneficial to reward yourself as you get through all the designated portions. Whether it is watching an episode of tv between each chunk of work, something sweet at the end of your lunch break, or buying something on your wish list when the week is completed, this will help you keep organized and stay on top of your game.
5. Maintaining That GPA
Every college student starts Freshman year with a 4.0 GPA and every college starts each semester with an A in their classes. It is up to us, the college students, to keep the grades. AS mentioned, our college life is fully in our control. From the moment we get the syllabus, we are fully aware of what is expected and required from us, including the breakdown of all the assignments and their points and the overall points offered for the course. At this point, even if it is looking it over the first time on the first day of class, we can Google “percentage calculator” and find out how many points from the total equals an A. Therefore, as the weeks go on, we are fully aware of how many points we have, how much wiggle room we have between 100% and 90%, and when, if there is a point, we can skip an assignment. It is easier than you think to earn an A and easier than you think to maintain a 4.0 GPA.
Amy Santiago Style
Though it may seem a bit backward to over schedule and to have more physical copies of stuff than digital now that everything is online and unstructured, but all these adjustments will help ensure a successful year. Remember, we all start class with an A and it is our job to maintain it. For other helpful tips and tricks, comment below!
Author | English Major | #RealLifeBelle | Academic Romance | "This was no accident, this was a therapeutic chain of events." | www.TheMousyGirl.com