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Anna Rossignol's study tips

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Because of the lockdown, we have been forced to work from home and that can sound impossible. Unachievable. All habits and routines are gone, along with the quiet working spaces and academic environment. But after all, is it that hard to recreate these, at home?

Here are my tips, not life changing maybe but useful and inspiring at least.

First problem in lockdown is that we have too much time. So much that we end up having no time to study. Procrastination at its finest. But here is the solution : time blocking. Two words for a simple concept. Just before sleeping I clearly define my study time slots for the next day, taking into account both familial and personal obligations. It is just like setting up a small planning where I dedicate specific time “blocks” for certain tasks and responsibilities (mainly study). While a “to do list” tells you what you need to do, a “time blocking” tells you when you are going to do it. And you end up with a much more productive day. ® See the many articles on the subject on the internet.

Second problem in lockdown is not having enough quiet space, or not enough space at all, being stuck in a childish room colonized by a little brother during your absence. Just like at uni, the tip is the same : make sure to set up a neutral corner with a desk (or anything alike) and fill it only with the things you really need to work, that is a computer and books. Just as in the library, I put a good pair of ear/headphones on and no distraction is possible, this corner is the study corner. A sort of sacralised space of knowledge with a note saying: ‘do not disturb I’m working’. And I will rather quit sitting in this space rather than scroll Instagram in it. If you are not studying do not go there, if you go there, study. Simple, efficient. Why ? Because checking your notifications is way more

Third problem, then, is the lack of motivation, obviously. The perspective of having tons of work to do is the best way to remove me the will to do it. There is a tip that also work at uni and can be linked to tip 1: microproductivity. More difficult word but just as simple concept. It basically designates the fact of focusing to put one foot in front of the other rather than gazing with dread at the entire marathon route ahead of you. Eat an elephant one bite at a time. By fractioning your tasks (and associating them with certain periods of your day #tip1) you will end up way more organized, less lost, more productive, and less discouraged : is it hard to just read an article ? Then another one ? Is it hard to highlight the important points ? And after that, to write down important ideas ? And then to organise them ? It for sure looks less painful than directly finding an essay plan for your essay, yet it is just the same. ® See the many articles on the subject on the internet.

Now that you just have small tasks to do, which have dedicated time slots in your day and are completed in an appropriate environment, what is missing ?

Pair and tutor support. Luckily for us, we live in the 21st century so all the most dedicated and helpful Warwick Staff and seminar Tutors are one click away, ready to answer your questions and support you the best. Same for your habitual friends: I experienced studying via House Party (the app) with a friend and honestly, even if our micros were shut, just see her from the corner of my eye studying, taking breaks together and going back to study at the same time gave me all the motivation and support I could have still been missing.

Those are my tips, briefly explained. I hope you found some ideas and feel less stressed/overwhelmed/discouraged by the perspective of doing all your work at home !

Ps: I have some other tips such as the importance of having a routine that can have good impacts on studying but it will be for next time.


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