Feeling anxious about online study? It's only natural! We've got some tips to help you get in the zone.
As with anything new, you may be feeling just a tad (or a ton) anxious about studying online. You may be wondering whether you’ve got everything you need to start, let alone succeed. The good news is, you don’t need much – just a few basics to arm yourself for the journey ahead. Let’s jump in!
What you need to succeed studying online:
Online access to your LMS
To study online, you’ll need… drum roll please … access to your online study materials! These are housed in your uni’s Learning Management System (LMS). While this might feel like a salute to Captain Obvious, navigating your LMS can take a little time to get used to.
As a student of the university you're studying with through OUA, you'll be issued log in details directly from them. These will usually appear in your university email account.
If you do encounter any issues with your access, get in touch with the university. They can help with anything LMS related, meanwhile, OUA can help if you need a hand accessing your Student Hub. This is a separate space dedicated to managing your enrolment through OUA.
All the right study materials
Depending on what you’re studying, your study materials might be 100% online, or you might need a textbook too.
If you’re unsure about textbook requirements for your subject, refer to the textbooks and study materials page. You can also clarify your study material requirements with your tutor.
Organised email inboxes
Once you've enrolled and have officially started, you’ll have a personal email address that you used to create your OUA account AND your university provider will have created a university email address for you too.
It’s important that you check both email accounts throughout your studies, so you can receive important information from both your uni and us.
In an effort to check your emails daily, set your desktop mail client to open on computer start-up, and put aside some time at the start of every day to go through your emails. Be rigid with this – you’ll thank us later when you’re on top of the goings-on in class!
There’s no need to get fancy in order to study online, however, there are some essential programs that you’ll need to succeed – a word processor, a spreadsheet program, and a slide presentation program will do the trick. Most people will already be using the Microsoft Office Suite, which contains Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
If you want your documents available to you wherever you go, try using a cloud office application, such as Google Docs. It has the same feel and function as your standard Microsoft Office programs, but your documents are stored online, so you can access them on any device with an internet connection. The best part? You can collaborate with classmates on assignments with changes auto-saved.
Commonly, Blackboard or Canvas are the platforms used by universities to present course announcements and content, including class notes and resources. Check with your university lecturer on which your uni uses, and then download the software if needed. Clear instructions for how to successfully complete set-up and get up and running are usually readily available within your uni LMS.
A darn great study space
You don’t have to delve deep into the principles of Feng Shui to set up a great study space!
Have a think about what inspires you, as well as what distracts and discourages you. These can be quite obvious, like the presence of other people, noise levels and cleanliness, or they may be more subtle, like the quality of light, the temperature, or your view.
Do what you must to make your space one in which you feel inspired and motivated – you’re going to spend a lot of time in there, so it’s well worth the effort.