20 hours may sound like a lot, but the key to successful study during your online postgraduate degree is a little bit of careful preparation. Whether you’re studying for your Bachelor degree, Master or simply expanding your knowledge base, these tips will help you get the most out of your study time.
Short study sessions – half an hour blocks – help the synapses in your brain process information much better than lots of information in long sessions. Avoid all-nighters, try to exercise regularly and start preparing early in the semester to get ahead.
Write a list of everything you need to achieve in your day. Prioritise your tasks and allocate the appropriate amount of time to help keep your mind focused. Of those tasks, you can take it one step further and list out your study goals and tick them off when you reach them, this helps you feel in control and reduce any study stress. When you reach all your goals by the end of the day, that sense of achievement will keep you motivated for your next challenge!
Create the ideal study space, and gather all the books and items you will need. This prep time also prepares the brain for study. Also, limit distractions – turn off your phone notifications, even just for an hour – we know it’s hard, but smart devices are the number one distraction in our lives. One hour of distraction-free study is far more effective than three hours of multi-tasking, so set aside some time to check your emails or notifications separately. Other ways to avoid getting distracted could be setting the alarm earlier to catch an hour of study before your family wakes up, or heading down to your local coffee shop or library.
If you use public transport to get around, there’s a good chance that you could have a handy couple of hours up your sleeve per day to be tackling required reading, posting comments in forums (this often counts towards your assessments) or watching the weekly video on your phone. Practise tests are also a good way to see where you’re at, and what you might need to focus on more. Online learning allows you to study any place, any time, so make the most of that flexibility.
Don’t put unrealistic expectations on yourself – it’s important to know your schedule and work around it. Use the entire week and reach out to family, friends, colleagues, and even student advisors, if things start to get out of hand. Knowing when to ask for assistance can save you from a larger problem later down the track.
Ready to hit the books and juggle your work, life and study? Find out more about our flexible online courses or speak to one of the friendly Student Enrolment Advisors at SCU Online today on 1300 589 882.
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