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How to be successful at online learning: 8 strategies and tips for learning online

Watch lectures at 1.5x speed

... and pause/rewind during sections you don’t understand.

Because you don’t get to ask questions, it’s important that you train yourself to fully understand one section before moving on.

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How to be successful at online learning: 8 strategies and tips for learning online

How to be successful at online learning: 8 strategies and tips for learning online

https://medium.com/the-mission/how-to-be-successful-at-online-learning-8-tips-for-learning-online-5c414ddc75a2

medium.com

8

Key Ideas

Having a study buddy

Find a friend to do it with you and commit to weekly study sessions.

Online learning is usually lonely and when you get stuck you are really stuck — having friends to work through problems together is critical.

Start with just 1 class

Although you're probably tempted to choose with more than 1, start with 1 class and finish it before moving on.

The first class is the hardest because you need to learn how to learn online and also learn the material.

Establish a routine study schedule

Block out 2–3 hours Monday through Friday for classwork.

It’s not realistic to think that you can just put it off to the weekend because you may hit a block or be tired from working all week.

Turn off your distractors

Don’t check email. Don’t pick up your phone or text.

It’s so easy to spend an hour messaging or checking Instagram, so don’t even give yourself the opportunity to get distracted.

Get a kitchen timer

Tell yourself you will focus on it for 15 mins.

 During the 15 mins, you’re so focused on working for 15 mins that you won’t get distracted; and after 15 mins you’ve made sufficient progress to be ‘in the zone.’ 

Watch lectures at 1.5x speed

... and pause/rewind during sections you don’t understand.

Because you don’t get to ask questions, it’s important that you train yourself to fully understand one section before moving on.

Buy the book

A lot of times the lectures/handouts don’t explain something well. 

It’s best to get a book to get a second explanation because there are no teachers or course assistants to ask.

Grade yourself on assignments faithfully

It’s easy to think that you shouldn’t have missed the dumb mistake, but often your process for problem solving can be dramatically improved.

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“Focused” and “Diffused” Modes

When learning, there are times in which you are focused and times in which you allow your mind to wander. Both modes are valuable to allow your brain to learn something.

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Chunking
This is the idea of breaking what you want to learn into concepts. 

The goal is to learn each concept in a way that they each become like a well-known puzzle piece. 

In order to master a concept, you not only need to know it but also to know how it fits into the bigger picture.

Beware of Illusions of Competence
There are many ways in which we can make ourselves feel like we have “learned” a concept.

Instead of highlighting or underlining, rather take brief notes that summarize keys concepts.

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How To Portray Yourself

You should like your photos but they should accurately depict your physical appearance. Well perceived pictures often feature a genuine smile (one that makes your eyes start to crinkle up) and a slight head tilt.

Briefly write what’s distinctive and interesting about you and what you’re looking for. Ideally, dedicate 70% for the former and 30% for the latter.

Choosing The Right Dating Apps

Research shows that people tend to fall for others similar to themselves. Being honest about yourself and your needs increases the odds that you will meet compatible people.

Besides being honest, you should consider an app’s target demographic and use the apps that fit your needs well. 

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Learning and practice

Acquiring information is not learning.

Although textooks can help, they only work when combined with practice.

The Research Phase
  1. Get the big picture. Scan articles etc. to get an idea of what the field is about.
  2. Determine scope. Limit the size of what you want to learn. “Physics” or “philosophy” is too wide and will take decades. “Classical mechanics”, while still wide, might be a bit easier.
  3. Define success. Make a clear goal for your learning.
  4. Find resources 
  5. Create a learning plan from what you have learned in you previous steps.
  6. Filter resources. Narrow down your resource list (Step 4) to the most important essentials.
The Learning Phase
  1. Learn enough to get started.
  2. Playing around with the information will give context and tacit knowledge to go back and do more verbal, analytic learning.
  3. Learn enough to do something useful with it.
  4. Teach. It is the only way to know for sure that you’ve learned something and a great way to fill in the gaps in your learning.

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