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Asian American Medical Society

For many students, this new year feels like deja vu. The Omicron variant has forced school closures and a return to online-learning. However, you could still try to make the best out of this situation! Here are some tips and tricks to maximize your effectiveness.

Your routine

Your learning routine is one of the cornerstones of your online studies. If you keep up positive habits, you’ll soon see the results. Although it’s tempting to get complacent when your classes are on the internet (whether live or recorded), it’s vital you stay focused. Here are some ways you can do so:

1. Treat it as you would in person

One of the best ways to approaching online learning is to treat classes as you would in person. While it is enticing to sleep in bed or play video games through class, it is not conducive to effective learning. Set yourself high standards and try to meet them. If you wouldn’t do it in a classroom, don’t do it when you’re learning online!

2. Take notes

Whether your lectures are live or prerecorded, make sure to take notes during class! It might be tempting to think of your recorded classes as pre-made study notes, but taking your own notes will help you engage with the material and learn better!

3. Contribute

Learning is a two-way street. Although taking notes is important, be sure to participate in discussions! Ask questions when it’s appropriate, and always seek help if you need it!

Your Skills

Your soft skills could help you with online learning as well! These skills are character traits, attitudes, and behaviors that help you deal with challenges. Here are a couple that are really important to learning!

1. Time Management

When you are learning online, it’s up to. You to manage your own time and meet deadlines. There is always a danger of procrastination, and online learning just makes it worse! To combat this, start by reviewing the syllabus of each of your courses. Identify all the key dates, such as tests or assignment due dates, and add them to a diary. Be sure to keep a daily to-do list to help you keep on track!

2. Organization

As well as organizing your time, it is also important organize your environment! Keeping a simple and clean desk area free of distractions is key to paying attention during class! You could also organize your time by using planners, calendars, or study diaries. Just be sure to keep everything in-check and accessible!

3. Communication

When learning online, communication and collaboration skills become even more vital! The skills needed are different from those in the classroom. Discuss and share work with your teachers and classmates to get the most out of learning!

4. Motivation

Even though the world seems to be in a big mess, it is important to keep yourself motivated! Your routine and time management skills play a big part in your overall motivation, but be sure to reward yourself when you complete your goals! A spa day or getting take-out seem to be a great way to start!

Your health

Self-care is essential to keeping your routine sustainable. Taking care of your physical and mental wellbeing could help you stay productive and avoid burnout!

1. Be kind to yourself

Studying online can sometimes be a bit taxing. Spending all day sitting at a computer would make anyone feel overwhelmed! Remember to stretch regularly and get away from your desk. A small reward every day could go a long way! Don’t beat yourself up if you’re having a hard time. Just know that this is completely normal, and be sure to seek help if you need it!

2. Take breaks

Make sure to give yourself some time to take a break! Most people can maintain concentration for 50-90 minutes maximum, and anything more than that would make you feel tired and frustrated. With this in mind, be sure to plan your breaks accordingly! Plan short and long breaks throughout your day to make sure you could be efficient when you do work!

3. Get enough sleep

Sleep is critical to our health, in or out of the pandemic. Thankfully, online learning has allowed us to catch an extra hour of Z’s without having to drive to school! The temptation to nap during the day could be a HUGE mistake. Be sure to set yourself a regular sleep routine, avoid caffeine, and minimize your screen time before bed!

4. Socialize

The pandemic has made socializing not the easiest task, but it is not impossible. Hop on a call with friends and family to stay in touch! Loneliness is a horrible feeling, so don’t let yourself feel isolated, and make sure to reach out to support if you need it!

I wish you all the best through your academic journey!

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