Zooming back to class: How students can lower stress and stay organized

Students have now spent the better part of the last two years learning remotely at home.

With the world starting to open and in-class learning returns, students are feeling stressed and worried they’ve lost the habits of staying organized while commuting to and from school every day.

Here are some ways that you can stay organized and keep the stress of going back to in-person learning to a minimum.

1. Write it down.

Photo credit: Chloe Shippeyhoskin

Whether you’re writing your assignments down in an organized agenda, or in a list on a sticky note, writing notes to yourself is an important part of staying organized.

Jack Fenn, a music industry arts student at Algonquin College, says that they find writing down their assignments in as many places as possible helps them remember what needs to be done.

According to a 2014 study done by Pam Mueller at Princeton University and Daniel Oppenheimer at the University of California, handwriting notes rather than typing allows you to better remember what you’ve put to paper.

The research focuses largely on taking notes during lectures and concludes that because you can’t transcribe everything being said when writing by hand it forces you to summarize, which helps you remember in the long term.

2. Find your ideal work area.

Photo credit: Chloe Shippeyhoskin

Finding a perfect area that helps keep you on task when doing your schoolwork and organizing your notes can take a lot of trial and error.

Some students need something in the background, whether it be music or a tv show, to keep them focused and not distracted by the outside world. Other students need complete silence with no distractions, an environment that can be hard to find.

One Italian study has found that classical music “significantly increases” memory compared to no music at all. The study also found that traditional white noise doesn’t yield the same results as classical music.

3. Schedule when you’re going to work.

Photo credit: Chloe Shippeyhoskin

Finding time on busy days often has students stressed about when they are going to get assignments done. Some students find that scheduling specific times to do their work allows them to not stress about when they’re going to get the assignments done.

Ryan Herzog, a computer programming student at Algonquin College, feels that scheduling his work sessions allows him to not feel guilty about playing video games or hanging out with friends because he knows when he is going to get his work done.

According to research done through Stanford University, students who studied for more than three hours a night were more engaged in academics but experienced more academic stress, physical health problems and had trouble finding balance in their life.

For more tips on staying organized, check out Essential Study Skills on the Algonquin College website.


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