The ongoing global pandemic has impacted all aspects of society, including education. Many institutions have halted or at least limited face-to-face teaching, increasing the students’ dependence on online study tools or platforms.
If you are attending a university, you must be able to adapt to get at least the same quality of education before the pandemic. To find university module notes or learning materials and use them to the fullest, there are some things you need to keep in mind.
Secure a Strong Internet Connection
Some of the newer university modules are in the form of large data files, which require an internet connection at a reasonable speed if you want to download them. If you still use a dial-up connection, you definitely need to upgrade to broadband.
Expert opinions vary to some degree, but a bandwidth no lower than 1.5 Mbps to 3 Mbps is highly recommended. Perform a speed test to find out if you meet this requirement. If the test shows that you don’t, find ways to boost your internet connection.
Invest in Two Screens
If you will be doing most of your studying online, consider investing on a laptop or desktop that can run a second monitor. More often than not, you would need to see the web browser to find university module notes while you access the word processor or a similar tool. If you go this route, make sure that your unit does not use a mirrored screen only, as this will defeat the purpose of having two monitors.
Investing in two separate monitors may be too much for some students. Your only option in this situation is to find an efficient way to switch from one application to another. Try to master using the Alt-Tab keys. If you press down both buttons, the screen will display all open applications. From there, you can switch quickly.
Update Your Computer Hardware
Similar to a fast internet connection, the laptop or desktop you are using must also be able to keep up. Any brand or model will do sufficiently, as long as it is no more than three years old. Most experts recommend at least an i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, an SSD storage, webcam and audio, and enough USB ports.
Develop New Study Habits
For your online learning to be complete, it is not enough to find university module notes. You must be able to get the most out of it by using appropriate study techniques. If you are used to reading from a printed paper or book, it is time to familiarise yourself with reading from a screen. You must also get used to making notes or annotating study modules using online computer software. Some PDF documents and web pages can be highlighted electronically if needed. Avoid printing the module notes as much as possible, as this will prevent you from homing your computer skills, aside from being a waste of paper.
Organise a Group Chat With Other Students
Some school activities involve working with other students. While this may present some challenges for studying online, it should not be enough to stop all sorts of group undertakings. Try to set up a group online where you can chat or video chat with other students in your class. Aside from allowing you to take on group activities, it is also a great venue to ask for help, share ideas, and nurture relationships.