By Amani Dobson || Campus Life Editor
It has been a solid two weeks of online classes, but for some reason it’s felt like an eternity. For most students, being home and doing school work from home makes school feel entirely more optional than it is. According to The Week, the academic benefits of online learning are not clear at all. Most students perform significantly worse in online courses than in courses that take place in a classroom. Also, online colleges have a higher rate of students dropping out. Multitasking is the main problem here. Students attempt to complete work while playing video games, eating, or listening to music which can cause endless distractions. In a classroom setting the number of distractions are limited because the students are in an academic setting where, oftentimes, they cannot decide to pause work and go make a sandwich or stop working to watch a few episodes of Netflix. Instead their minds are focused solely on the lesson and their professor.
Even if multitasking is not the problem for students currently completing online schooling, motivation most likely is. For most, being at home signifies the end of the semester or a break. Because of that, students have begun to fall into unhealthy sleeping patterns, and they have started to procrastinate even more. During this current pandemic, death, fear, and health issues are spreading rapidly, making a small assignment seem trivial in the grand scheme of events going on in the world. It is not easy to find relevance in completing many online assignments. Students who have spent such a long time adjusting to life on campus are suddenly being forced to shift all of their habits to readjust at home in the middle of a global pandemic.
Fear not students, there are many ways to start to feel motivated to complete online work again. For starters, remember to keep a positive mindset. When you wake up in the morning, tell yourself “today I am going to do…” and list out a few tasks you want to complete that day. Writing a to-do list may even make those tasks feel more concrete and doable. Also, remember to give yourself breaks. Forcing yourself to work nonstop for hours on end will only tire you out and produce work that is not to your fullest potential. Instead, give yourself 15 or 20 minute breaks after each assignment to relax your brain. Many people find that their mental health is in a better place to tackle large assignments after exercising or doing yoga. If that is something that appeals to you, find short moments, specifically in the morning, to exercise before starting school work.
Overall, just know that many other students are facing the same situations as you are. Don’t feel like a bad student for finding it hard to get all of your assignments done. This is not an easy time, and it comes with a lot of trial and error. Remember your first few weeks of college, how it took time to settle and adjust into this new way of living. It’s the same thing now. Everyone is adjusting and settling into online classes, so of course you may not get the hang of things right away, and that’s okay. Keep trying your best and doing what you can. We are all in this experience together. Reach out to advisors or friends for help with motivating yourself as well. With time, everything will smooth out.
Freshman Amani Dobson is the Campus Life Editor. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org