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“Just not in your pyjamas, please”: how to learn online

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If there were no pandemic, the universities would be full of students. Would any of them dare to come to their pace of study in pyjamas? I don’t think so. However, many young people feel exempt from certain rules, when they are forced by circumstances to study on-line. So, it is worth getting a grip on matters. It is a matter of self-discipline, respect for yourself, and others. What else is worth knowing about how to learn on-line? We have some tips for you.

You certainly miss university life, the hustle and bustle in the corridors, meetings with your favourite lecturers, conversations, jokes, or shared coffee. No wonder. Man is a social being, he needs contact with others.

Today, however, there is no choice. Due to the pandemic, learning takes place remotely. Whether it will be effective and pleasant, is also up to you.

Turn on the camera

It is important that you see the lecturer and the other participants during the class, and that they see you. It is best not in your pyjamas, and not in bed, unless your health is bad.

Only when you see yourself is there the right interaction – extremely valuable for teaching and learning. – There is mimicry, gesticulation, dramaturgy – this creates the dynamics of classes, as well as mobilising and creating professor-student relationships. It is also easier to build a community and maintain regular contact between the lecturers and students through e-mails, chats, and forums.

However, to see other classmates, you need a good internet connection. If you have a problem with this, change your provider. Once you have overcome technical barriers, it will be much easier for you.

Invest in sound quality

Good sound quality is fundamental. – “During on-line classes, you need to hear well: if not, it disturbs everything,” stresses Marcin Antosiewicz, lecturer at the Vistula University. When the sound is poor, you may not understand a crucial point, fail to hear something, lose the plot, or react incorrectly. Good equipment costs pennies today. It is worth investing in it. It is a matter for your comfort and satisfaction.

Make yourself comfortable.

Remote learning has an advantage over traditional forms of learning, in that you can create ideal conditions for yourself. Find a comfortable place, take care of the light, and brew a cup of good tea or coffee. Let learning time be a pleasant time for you, not another hard duty. Ventilate the room in which you will be learning beforehand. This is important for your brain. Better oxygenation means more efficiency, and the ability to work intensively, intellectually.

It is also worth making sure that your learning space is tidy, because this definitely aids concentration.

Organise yourself

– “Learning should always be planned,” says Marta Kozak-Gołębiowska, Director of the Digital Education Centre at Vistula University. Mark lectures and exercises in the calendar. Even if they are in university systems, you can forget about them.

It is also good practice to archive everything that is really important on-line, e.g. in the clouds and off-line, e.g. in specially created catalogues or binders for notes, if you make them by hand.

Also keep track of your progress – use a notebook, planner, or on-line tool to write down the next steps in your learning, and mark them as completed after your next class.

Also keep an eye on the deadlines for completion of partial assignments and tests – remember, that if you are late, it can have an effect on your final grades.

Use your talents

While learning, take notes on the computer, or even better, by hand, because manual writing supports the process of remembering. Taking notes on the computer is effective, because you can not only save texts, but also take screenshots of important illustrations or diagrams.

Use your talents to support you in your on-line learning process. If you like to draw, create visual notes from your classes. Use colours, as well as drawings, to better remember the content. For listeners, it is a good idea to listen to lecture recordings. You can also record your own thoughts and notes on a dictaphone. Those with an analytical mind, should take notes in the form of tables and charts, and those who usually think about many things at once, and like digressions, should take notes in the form of a thought map.

Ensure that you are motivated

When studying on-line, it is sometimes difficult to maintain the motivation to learn. When you think that you have to complete a long subject, you often stop learning immediately, and the task seems too big to bear. – “So, divide the process into small stages,” advises Marta Kozak-Gołębiowska. “Let it be even 15-20 minutes of learning per day. Mark each subsequent stage as completed; – you will see your progress with your own eyes, and this has a good effect on your motivation.”

Try to maintain contact with other students. Create your own group, using social media, to support and motivate each other.

Also contact the lecturers. Ask questions and share doubts. They will definitely support you.

And finally, reward yourself! For every job, exam, or semester you do, give yourself a smaller or larger reward. This really works.

Studying on-line is great

Studying is a wonderful time in people’s lives. The most important factors are that you learn new things, expand your horizons, meet people, and discover yourself. Every form of learning has its advantages and limitations. Each of them is great. Through on-line studies, you develop digital competences. You develop self-discipline and time management skills. You also learn to be creative. These are important competences in life. You will use them successfully in the future.

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The university implements projects co-financed by the European Union
Vistula University in Pultusk

Vistula University in Pultusk

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