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Posted 20.03.20

10 top tips for studying from home

By Naomi Girdler
It can be difficult adjusting to studying from home when your routine usually revolves around being on campus and making the most of studio time, but there are things you can do to make the most out of remote learning. Here’s our top tips for studying at home:
  • Get changed out of your pyjamas

    It’ll help you get in the right headspace for working and means you can take video calls throughout the day if necessary.
     
  • Create a morning routine

    Have a shower, get dressed, grab a cup of coffee, do a quick workout, have a decent breakfast, do some meditation, watch a funny Youtube video - create a routine that starts your day positively and ends with you doing work.
     
  • Maintain regular hours

    Set a schedule and stick to it. Having guidelines for when to work and when to call it a day helps maintain a work-life balance. Installing an automatic time-tracking app, such as RescueTime, lets you check in on whether you’re sticking to your schedule.
     
  • Have a dedicated study space

    Ensure your space is quiet, organised and distraction-free! Ask family, friends and colleagues to respect your working hours, so you’re not interrupted or distracted unnecessarily. If you do have to work from your bedroom, try and make a sacred space for sleeping and relaxing where work is banned.
     
  • Build a study plan

    Plan ahead using a calendar. Creating to-do lists at the start of each week can help you prioritize and stay on track with your studies. It can help to break down tasks into time limits, so you know how long each task should take on average which can keep you focussed and also work to help your self-discipline.
     
  • Take regular breaks

    Your productivity will decrease if you are feeling tired or frustrated. When taking a break, make sure you get away from your study space; you need a change of scenery. Even stopping to open a window and get some fresh air will help you maintain balance, renew energy and allow you to go back to studying with a clear head. Don’t short-change yourself during breaks either, especially your lunch break.
     
  • Ask for help when you need it

    Your lecturers are on hand to help you, so make sure you ask for help if you’re struggling, feel like you’re falling behind, or not feeling motivated. By asking questions, you can also help your tutors evaluate the effectiveness of online teaching, and not only do you help yourself, but you could also be helping your virtual classmates who are having similar difficulties. 
     
  • Keep connected

    In uncertain times it is important to remember the power of friendship. Reach out to each other virtually, keep in touch with your classmates on social media, or on online chat platforms such as Google Chat. You could set up a WhatsApp group, or a Facebook closed group to suggest study tips and tricks, offer input into your course, engage in new ideas and participate in online discussions and crits. This will not only enhance your learning experience but keep you feeling connected to your peers. You can also use the Big White Wall to stay connected with your peers, it's a safe online resource for students, supporting those who are stressed, anxious or feeling low. Join for free with your college email.
     
  • Stay motivated

    Don’t underestimate the effort it’ll take to commit to studying online during these turbulent times. Decorate your study space, have healthy snacks ready to boost your energy, reward yourself for ticking things off your to-do list, listen to music or stick on a podcast - find out what helps you focus.
     
  • Stay positive

    It’s important to keep positive during hard times, only consume as much information and media as you can handle and keep yourself busy. The world is a scary place right now, but this too will pass.

For regular updates on the college's response to Covid-19 (Coronavirus) and FAQs covering absence reportingopening times, and assessment hand-ins — please regularly check your student email. 

You can access support through Plymouth College of Art by emailing studentsupport@pca.ac.uk who can provide you tailor made advice. Students can also make appointments with our counsellor, welfare advisor and wellbeing advisor through Google Chat. More information is available through the Student Support section on the Student Portal.

For more advice on how to look after your mental heath and wellbeing during this time, you can find information on the Gov.uk website as well as our blog.

Keep connected with our online community through our social media platforms:

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