Succeed with your distance studies

Efficiency can be described as the amount of meaningful work in relation to time spent. Here are some tips on how to get the most out of your (possibly unplanned) distance studies.


Set goals and plan your studies
  • Set clear, realistic and measurable goals that you think you can achieve. What needs to be done, and by when?
  • Prioritize what you need to do. What is important and less important? What do you have to do urgently and what can wait?
  • Focus your planning on the big tasks first. There will always be time to do the small ones in the gaps.
  • Time-box your reading and assignments, possibly based on your reading speed Improve your reading strategies
  • Keep track of course deadlines and submission dates for assignments.
  • Make a study plan where you divide the work in suitable chunks that allow even workload. Plan to be ready well ahead of deadline and remember to set aside time for review.
  • Start with the biggest, most important and most boring things. You’ll get the smaller, more enjoyable things done anyway. Schedule tomorrow while you’re at it so you get a flying start!


Manage time and place
  • Take control of your study environment! You probably know what you might be distracted by, so turn off your phone and study where you won’t be interrupted by friends, e-mails, social media, YouTube, TV, laundry, dirty dishes or noisy kids.
  • Frigör och värdesätt din tid. Våga säga nej till saker som tar fokus från studierna.
  • Begränsa mängden möten och lägg dem på tider då du ändå inte är särskilt produktiv.
  • Your physical study environment matters. Your bed and sofa might be comfy, but they are probably not all that great from an ergonomic point of view. Take care of your back, your shoulders and try to have good lighting.
  • Start early and focus on one thing at a time. Avoid multi-tasking since it wastes valuable time in the long run.
  • Take frequent breaks. Why not try Pomodoro or similar techniques to keep the study intervals short and focused. Try to move and stretch often.
  • Stay determined and stick to your plan. Have grit!


Be smart
  • Look at earlier course evaluations, read the course syllabus and be sure to understand the course goals. Try to get hold of assignments and exams from previous courses.
  • Read assignments carefully! Discuss them with others to make sure you interpret them the same way. Try to understand the purpose of the questions and assignment, why they are asked in the first place how they are assessed and graded Ask your teacher if you’re unsure.
  • Answer the question. Answer all Be clear in your answers and show your understanding. Argue for your methods and  solutions.
  • Work with other students who share your goals and ambitions. Cooperate ethically and within reason to avoid cheating and plagiarism
  • Discuss expectations of each other and raise any problems as early as possible.
  • Learn stuff your way, but accept that others might use other strategies
  • Use cloud-based services such as Google Docs, both to prevent problems with sharing files and to be able to see who’s done what. You might end up with a lot of files, so be smart in how you name them.
  • Ask questions and be an active student. Encourage and participate in discussions and do you part in making the course great for others.
  • Ask for help when necessary. Comment och proof-read each other’s text. Contact the Academic Support Centre if you have to
  • Participate in course evaluations!

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