Successful home study tips during COVID-19

ABE alumnus and successful entrepreneur, Selveena Parmanum, achieved an ABE Top Paper award through self-study.  With many people unable to access the normal support of their centre during the COVID-19 pandemic, she shares her tips for success to help those in this position who are preparing for exams:

SelveenaThe Covid-19 pandemic is having a global impact affecting the lives of people with restrictive measures. Lockdown, curfew or stay at home to contain this pandemic - we all having to navigate this unaccustomed period, where we had little or no time to prepare ourselves to face this crisis. It hit us by surprise, putting our lives on hold and killing so many people around the world. Yet we should not let this situation disorientate us. This pandemic is also giving us an opportunity to change our behaviour, thinking and lifestyle among which learning and working from home is taking on a new dimension in our lives.

Sometimes, as a student we feel like we're in a constant race against the clock when exams are near. I would like to share some tips how to keep yourself focused on your studies during this period of confinement. First of all, it is important to keep in mind your life goals. If studying and learning is a choice you have made, remember the benefit that you will derive from acquiring knowledge will contribute positively in securing a better future or enabling you to excel in your career.

Plan time effectively

Learning to manage time effectively is a skill that every student should master. Plan your day and time for study. For example, you can create a study guide by topics and prioritise which part is more important for your assignment and exams. Creating blocks of study time will not only make you more organised but also more confident and thus able to learn effectively.

Create the right environment

Your study environment is an aspect that will impact your learning period.  Your study space should be tidy, quiet and away from distractions. If you want to succeed in your studies, it is crucial to discipline your work even at home.

Utilise the internet as much as possible

The internet has been a blessing since its inception. It is an optimal resource for digital learning. You can access a lot of information that will enhance your learning on your own. Doing thorough online research can help you with ideas for your assignments. Write down the important notes.

Keep calm & be your own teacher

If internet is not available due to this pandemic crisis, please stay calm, don’t panic. Your peace of mind should be your priority. You can still rely on your textbooks, your class notes and past papers which are available to you. Be your own teacher. Read and re read your notes and try to understand what the concept is about.

Keep a study diary & form a study group

Keep a diary where you can jot down the important words and examples that can help you further. You can also make group work on your mobile and seek your friends’ help.

Mind-mapping

Another key idea of studying is through concept map or mind mapping (visualise, structure, drilldown, prioritise). It will facilitate with a free flow of ideas, help you in teamwork and structure information visually and assimilate better (for more information about this, see our previous blog here).

Look after yourself

It is essential for you to include some time breaks in your study schedule which will help you to evacuate the stress. You may like to do some stretching, walk around the house or go on the balcony and have some fresh air. You can do your hobby say cooking, painting, dancing, play some musical instruments or simply listen to your favourite music. Include some exercise daily, you may find doing meditation and yoga very beneficial for your mental state. It is vital for you to have a good diet - eat properly, drink plenty of water to keep yourself hydrated as your mind (brain) needs fuel to stay in top form. According to cognitive science, a good amount of sleep will also help you to study better.

I am sure if you set a target each day to tackle a particular subject and prioritise your revision, this will avoid unnecessary stress at exams time. Focus on your effort and embrace this challenge. Believe in yourself: you are capable of achieving your goals. In every success story lie these key factors - determination, willpower and hard work.

Sometimes a painful situation teaches us lessons that we didn’t think we needed. Let this pandemic be a lesson for life which will reshape the world with meaningful purposes. Let this not be a time to give up. Together we will be able to combat this pandemic. Trust the journey.  Stay safe. Stay blessed.

Topic