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I'm seeing lots of tips for lecturers preparing online teaching, but not so many ideas for students preparing for online learning, perhaps for the first time. Here is my advice for students.
1. Be patient: Your lecturers have been asked to make their teaching available to you online at the last minute. The best online learning takes time to develop. Please be patient with them if things don't go right for you the first time.
2. Embrace online: Online learning will become more and more common in the future, so this is a great chance for you to develop some skills to help you succeed.
3. Develop your communication skills: You will communicate in different ways on various online formats (email, discussion boards, social media, online seminars). Be professional and appropriate, but don't be afraid to project your personality and show that you are a real person.
4. What if I have a technical issue? Develop your initiative and resilience. Don’t give up if you hit a technical issue. For example, if your reading link is broken, maybe you can search for the journal article yourself by using the library search.
5. Stick to a routine: There are many time management techniques, so find one which works for you. There will likely be daily and weekly tasks for you to do plus longer term targets like deadlines. Plan a daily, weekly and monthly schedule to manage these different timescales.
6. Get connected: Be proactive with communicating with your course mates. Set up course Whatsapp groups (or another platform if you prefer) for offline chatting and engagement. Form small virtual study or reading groups and work through online materials together.
7. Find somewhere quiet to work. Yes you can work from bed but this might not be the most comfortable! Make sure you have somewhere peaceful to work, try and use a workspace like a desk or table, and cut down on external and online distractions.
8. Use the right channels to solve your problems: This will be signposted for you in your course, so contacting the correct person will help you get your problem solved more quickly.
9. Embrace discussion boards: If your course has them, these are a great way to discuss with your peers and work through learning as a group. Ask questions, comment on your course mates' answers, and enter into dialogue.
10: Online learning communities can be as rich, supportive and exciting as on campus learning. I hope you can adapt to this experience and benefit from it.
One last one - depending on your field, you might find collective and open access syllabi. @PolEcoNet has open access learning available: politicalecologynetwork.org/political-ecol…
Final point suggested by @beckmccarter "Be kind to yourself" Now is an anxious time, take care of yourself and others.💚
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