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Study from home – Online Courses
Studying from home is a smart choice. It saves you money and allows you to be flexible around work and family commitments – gaining the qualification you need at a pace and place convenient for you.
Home-based online study does, of course, come with its challenges, not least the fact that your home may not be geared up to be a natural learning environment.
These steps will help you to get on track so that you can adopt the classroom mind-set in a home environment…
Create a space for your online study
Ideally you’ll have a room to yourself to be able to complete your study tasks. If, for example, you’ve got a guest bedroom and rarely have people over to stay, then put this to better use as an ‘office’. If you can’t afford to dedicate a whole room to study then utilise a living room or bedroom for this function when you can. This is as much about symbolism as anything else. You need a corner of the house that you associate with the work you carry out for your degree so that you know, when there, it’s time to get serious and get on. If necessary, consider redecorating this space in a colour that is calming.
Get the right chair and desk to enable you to study properly
A good chair and desk are essential if you’re not to give yourself health problems. Invest in a chair that can be adjusted to a comfortable height for you and use a desk that contains storage for the stationary etc that you’ll need to use during the course of your study. Don’t scatter your study materials throughout the house or you’ll just create a mess and your work will become chaotic.
Make sure you’re well equipped to study in the evenings
Get a good lamp so that you’ll be able to work effectively during the evening, especially since you’ll probably be doing this to fit sessions around your working day.
Invest in the right tools to help complete your training course
You’ll also need a trusty computer. By studying online you are putting a lot of faith in this machine so it’s probably worth investing in something new if you can. If you’re using an older PC or laptop for studies then conduct a full software audit, get rid of any programs or files that you no longer need and clear the decks so that your machine can run effectively and won’t let you down. Get a good memory stick to back up and save your work and make sure you are happy with your internet connection – and that is safe and secure – so that you can access lessons and learning materials. Make sure your microphone and speakers can cope with contacting tutors online.
Don’t become distracted while you study online
You’ll need to be disciplined to avoid the distractions that exist around your home. By studying in a separate room you should avoid the television catching your eye but the internet is awash with potential distractions. Allow yourself short, sharp bursts of social media activity but otherwise hide these feeds from your view. Also, encourage the rest of the people in your home to leave you in peace when you need to concentrate.
Get your space right, set aside the distractions and use the right equipment and you’ll be well on the way to study success.
Published: 24 Feb 2016