Effective Time Management

Traditionally, most people find the norm in education to involve lectures in physical classrooms.  Tutor-student interaction is perceived as being only physical.  With innovations, virtual learning has been introduced with varying degrees of success. However, lots of students, and potential students, find virtual learning both difficult and inadequate. To this group, combining student life with work and other commitments is no small feat. Self-motivation and managing distractions represent significant challenges to the distance student.  Again, this is largely due to the traditional expectations that learning should be restricted to the four walls of a physical classroom.

Motivation and Team Work

As a first-time distance learning student, my experience thus far and from an informal interview with a friend (also on a distance learning program) has been informative.  With the flexibility we have, study can be self-paced and the ability to interact with classmates from different parts of the world without having to incur travel costs or work capabilities make it more interesting and enlightening. The key, however is “motivation”. Some students are supported financially by employers and family, but what all distance-learning students must have in common is a passion for their subject and a commitment to self-studying.

Collaborated on Ideas

While circumstances and situations differ, it is important to take advantage of the benefits that learning across borders poses such as increased networking, collaboration and ideas sharing thus initiating an exposure to innovative and unique perspectives. My experience of distance learning has been exciting and enlightening. I have got to know people from various countries and continents, identified with them (despite cultural differences) in terms of motives for registering, collaborated on ideas discussed, and built friendships that transcend the virtual environment.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CdRb8eX2Yns

Keep Focused and Track Progress

Drinking two litres of water a day and having a sleep schedule has drastically improved my focus and ability to concentrate, but more so having a set plan already in place, I no longer open my books and waste precious time wondering what to do or where to focus. I can look at my chart and see exactly what I need to do and get started straight away.

After all the hard work, it’s very rewarding to cross off the topics on your calendar to show how far you have come. This can help keep you on track and stay motivated and give you the best chance of success.

My experience of distance learning has been exciting and enlightening! I have got to know people from various countries and continents.

A few of my friends are also studying, not at the same university or even the same course, but having other friends who I can ‘study buddy’ with or check in, keeps us all determined and on track. Scheduling in catch-up time can give much needed respite without panic. This keeps your goals realistic and manageable.

What Is a College?

Oftentimes schools with “college” in their name are smaller institutions that emphasize undergraduate education, Johanna Fishbein, head of university advising at the United World College of South East Asia’s Dover Campus, an international school, said by email. This is not a strict rule, since there are a number of exceptions.

Prospective students

Since liberal arts colleges are uncommon outside the U.S., prospective international students aren’t always familiar with them, says Carly Mankus, senior assistant dean of international admission at Franklin and Marshall College, a liberal arts school in Pennsylvania. Prospective students may also sometimes mistakenly believe liberal arts institutions only focus on the humanities, admissions experts say. But many of these schools offer degrees in science fields too.

What Is a University?

Many schools with “university” in their name are larger institutions that offer a variety of both undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Public universities are some of the most sizable schools, sometimes enrolling tens of thousands of students. These schools are also highly committed to producing research. But it is a misconception that all schools with “university” in their name are big, says Emma Jones, assistant director of international student recruitment at the Estudiar University.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CdRb8eX2Yns

Which Type of School Is Right for You?

John from Estudiar University says prospective international students may want to keep their options open by applying to different types of institutions in the U.S. She says students often learn new things about themselves and their options later in the application process.

“If some place really interests you or some place just sounds so tantalizing, even if it’s not that same type that you think you might want when you start out, keep it in the mix,” John says. “What harm could it do?”

After all the hard work, it’s very rewarding to cross off the topics on your calendar to show how far you have come.

A few of my friends are also studying, not at the same university or even the same course, but having other friends who I can ‘study buddy’ with or check in, keeps us all determined and on track. Scheduling in catch-up time can give much needed respite without panic. This keeps your goals realistic and manageable.

Get Organized

The first step to manage your stress throughout the school year is to be in control of your academic responsibilities. If you receive your syllabi from your professors before the first day of class, read through it carefully and note important deadlines and exam dates. Keep track of those dates in a paper or digital planner so you can note when certain projects and timelines will overlap, or when you might have scheduling conflicts because of work or family obligations.

Buy Your Textbooks Upfront

Don’t wait until you receive your first reading assignment to head to the bookstore. Reach out to your instructors a few weeks before school starts and ask for a list of required reading materials. This small step shows that you’re willing to take initiative, and also gives you extra time to buy or rent your textbooks, or request a copy from the library. If you’re feeling motivated, read through the first chapter to become acquainted with course material before your first class.

Make a New Schedule

The addition of school work, classes and commuting can be overwhelming at first, especially when you’re already juggling work and family responsibilities. Adding classes to your weekly schedule will force you to establish a morning and evening routine that allows you to stay refreshed and focused all day. When you are adjusted to your new routine, you’ll be better able to manage your schoolwork in addition to other responsibilities.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CdRb8eX2Yns

Keep Focused and Track Progress

Drinking two litres of water a day and having a sleep schedule has drastically improved my focus and ability to concentrate, but more so having a set plan already in place, I no longer open my books and waste precious time wondering what to do or where to focus. I can look at my chart and see exactly what I need to do and get started straight away.

After all the hard work, it’s very rewarding to cross off the topics on your calendar to show how far you have come. This can help keep you on track and stay motivated and give you the best chance of success.

Making the extra effort to prepare for your first few weeks of school will help set the tone for a productive semester and put you on the right track towards achieving your goals.

A few of my friends are also studying, not at the same university or even the same course, but having other friends who I can ‘study buddy’ with or check in, keeps us all determined and on track. Scheduling in catch-up time can give much needed respite without panic. This keeps your goals realistic and manageable.

Learn English From U.S. Instructors, Locals or Mentors

Prospective international students may also want to consider learning American English through a summer program on a U.S. university campus. “One of the best ways for international students to improve their English-language speaking skills is to participate in an English-language intensive program,” Jane Griffiths says.

School Mentors can be Great Guides

Nguyen says she spoke often with her school’s director of international admissions, who helped answer her questions about American life before she arrived on campus. She says having attended an international school all her life, she was already in the habit of practicing English with friends from diverse countries, which has helped improve her skills naturally. “English is the universal language that helps us connect with each other,” Nguyen says.

Have a Study Method

Routine has been a saviour of study for me. Creating good healthy study habits has made it so much easier to ‘get down to work’ and be in the mental zone with limited procrastination. I study for four hours a day approximately, but try not to set yourself goals by time, or you could find yourself watching paint dry and counting it as four hours study. It is much better to study a certain topic or certain activity before taking a break.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CdRb8eX2Yns

Download a Language App or English Podcast

One option for prospective international students is to use an English-language app or listen to English-language podcasts like. “Successful communication requires both understanding what others say and being understood by others. This means that improving spoken language skills involves training both listening and speaking,” says Natasha Rustikova, head of learning science at Estudiar. Podcasts can also be helpful and often have transcripts, a written version of the audio, which allow users to listen and read at the same time. 

“English is the universal language that helps us connect with each other. And as we all know, practice makes perfect.

A few of my friends are also studying, not at the same university or even the same course, but having other friends who I can ‘study buddy’ with or check in, keeps us all determined and on track. Scheduling in catch-up time can give much needed respite without panic. This keeps your goals realistic and manageable.