Resources to help students set up for success in this new online learning environment:
- Email IT Help Desk at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Need Moodle support? Email email@example.com
- Call IT Help Desk at 608-796-3870
- Technology Guides for Students http://libguides.viterbo.edu/studenttech
Check your email…check your email…check your email. Did we say check your email? Yes we did! Email is the primary communication tool that will be used by your instructors. Read each email in its entirety so you have all the information you need to be successful with your coursework. You should be in your Moodle site, daily, to see what information has been posted by your instructors and classmates.
As your classes move to online it is more important now than ever to communicate with your instructors. If you are having issues with technology, not understanding assignments, or are ill, reaching out to your instructors is key to your course success. Your instructors are here to help, reach out and let them know if you have ANY questions. If you have other questions not answered here, please email viterbocares.viterbo.edu.
Here are some things you might want to keep track of for each class:
Are in-person parts of the class changing?
- What are the in-person parts of this course? (lecture, lab, et.c)
- Where can you find it or how do you access it? (live-stream, lecture capture, etc.)
- Is it at a specific time or can you watch it anytime?
Are assignments changing?
- Are there new due dates?
- Is how you’re submitting your assignments changing?
- Are any quizzes or exams being offered virtually?
What should you do if you need help?
- Is your instructor offering virtual office hours? When and how do you access?
- Is there an online discussion board for asking questions?
If you’re doing more work on your own and your time is less structured, you might be more tempted to multi-task. Many people think they can do multiple things at once. But switching between tasks tires out the brain, lessens retention of material you are trying to learn, and makes tasks take longer.
- Focus on one thing at a time
- Take regular breaks between tasks.
- Use a timer to help you focus for 30–60 minute periods and then reward yourself with 5–10 minute breaks.
- Stick to your course’s schedule as much as you can. Staying on a schedule will help you have a feeling of normalcy and prevent you from falling behind.
- Find out how to ask questions about lectures or readings. Is there a chat feature that the instructor will monitor? Is there a Moodle discussion?
- Take notes as if you were there in person; write summaries to process what you hear or read. Creating your own study materials (rather than re-reading or re-watching right before an exam) and revisiting material in regular, spaced-out sections will improve your retention.
- Listen to recordings at normal speed. Research shows that increased playback speed can lower retention and result in lower scores.
- Make an agreement to check on each other and ask for assistance. If someone has been unresponsive, ask them directly if they’re still able to participate in the project. If you aren’t getting responses within a day or two, let your instructor know.
- Meet regularly, especially if you usually touch base during class or lab. Consider a quick text on a group chat about progress every couple of days. Ideally, have real conversations over a video chat tool. (eg. zoom or teams (click on the teams link towards the top of the page))
- Set a purpose for meetings and use a shared notes doc. Meetings might feel different, even if your group was really good at working together in the past. Try to set the purpose of your meeting in advance. Take notes in a shared doc so you can all contribute and follow along.
In this time of social distancing, taking time to connect is important. Here are a few ideas:
- Schedule calls and/or face-to-face time (if you live with others). Talking with loved ones is often helpful when you’re stressed or nervous. Scheduling this time to connect can also help you be responsive to the needs of others while protecting your study time.
- Use video or chat tools to connect with classmates to talk through a tough problem
- Attend virtual office hours or organize virtual study groups.
- Make use of remote campus resources. Even if you haven’t always felt that you needed having another set of eyes on a paper or cover letter, needed tutoring support, or guidance from a peer, scheduling time to talk with people who care about your success can be especially valuable in this new learning environment.
Credit: Adapted from a resource by the University Of Michigan Center Of Academic Innovation, “Adjusting your study habits during COVID” (PDF). The original source is subject to a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. ©2020, Regents of the University of Michigan and the University of Wisconsin-Madison