See what Jacqi from Women in Mechanical Engineering (WME) has to say about success with online classes.
Q: Tips for being productive/successful with online classes?
A: This is a great question, and one that is super applicable to this upcoming semester. Like many of you, all of my classes have been moved online. I learned a lot in the spring semester about how to be productive in an online environment, and even more through a virtual internship this summer. Even without the online aspect, being productive and successful in academia is broken down into two categories: personal and academic. Obviously you want to be productive and successful in your classes, but in order to do that you have to take care of yourself too!
Maintain a regular sleep schedule that works with your classes and when you’re most productive. I work better earlier in the mornings so my sleep schedule reflects that, but do whatever works best for you.
Get at least 7 hours sleep, but 8 - 9 is ideal
Don’t force yourself to be productive every minute of every day, make sure to block out some time for yourself
Call/Facetime/Zoom your friends and family
Keep your room clean (and if you have a separate office/school area keep that clean too)
If you’re living with your family, make sure that you talk with them about when they can come in and talk to you and when you’re busy and don’t want to be disturbed
Get up and move around! Go on a walk, do a workout, dance around in your room
Drink water and eat healthy
Join student organizations! All of us have been working hard all summer to make this semester as awesome as possible for all of you. Orgs are such an amazing way to meet people that are interested in the same things you are
Again, figure out when you’re most productive and work then
Go to all of your classes!! This is so important
Have study sessions with other students in your classes. It’s a lot easier to learn material when you’re in a group and can bounce ideas around in real time
Have a planner or a way to keep track of your assignments and due dates
Google Calendar is your best friend
Both Cockrell and the University have so many resources available for tutoring, and your tuition is helping to pay for it so you might as well use it
Don’t be afraid to admit when you don’t know something. You’re here to learn, not know everything right off the bat
Join group chats for your classes! If your class doesn’t have a group chat make one! Be active in it! Make friends!
Don’t do school work in your bed. Just don’t do it
Either put your phone in a different room while you work or get an app that’s designed to help you focus. I use Flora and plant cute little virtual trees :)
Give your professors grace. You’re adjusting to an online environment, but so are they. Most professors love to get to know students so reach out and email them! Attend office hours and say hi!
As you go through this semester, remember that you have to take care of you. Reach out to your friends and family and say hi. Participate in student organizations and make new friends. You want to have a successful semester, and we want that for you too. Good luck from me, and good luck from WME!
You can find WME on social media here!
Facebook group: Women in Mechanical Engineering at UT
Women in Mechanical Engineering (WME) is a tight-knit community dedicated to helping female mechanical engineers at UT Austin expand their networks, develop improved professional and academic skills, and ultimately become the next-generation of female leaders in STEM.
This blog post was written by Jacqi Kelly from WME. Jacqi is a junior mechanical engineering student and is WME's corporate affairs representative.