It’s hard to adapt to online University lectures and working from home. For a lot of people, it has been quite a shift and something that they are not entirely used to. For those of you who are struggling to feel motivated, I thought I would write about my experiences during lockdown and how I have kept myself motivated over this period.

My top five revision tips:

  1. Only work within your normal university hours – Let’s say you usually have lectures from 9.00am – 6.00pm, then only work these hours. This technique helps you maintain structure throughout your day.
  2. Take regular breaks! Whether that is a little stroll around or a cup of tea or coffee, make sure that you have regular breaks throughout the day.
  3. Do not work from your bed – keep your work time and relaxation time separate, you do not want to fall asleep whilst revising!
  4. Ensure that your workspace is clean and tidy – An organised desk equals an organised mind. To revise successfully without procrastinating, you need to remove all distractions from your working environment.
  5. To-do lists! – a great way to ensure that you know what needs to be completed, to-do lists can prevent you from feeling overwhelmed and it is so satisfying to draw a tick in the box once you’ve completed a specific task.

For me, a typical day in my life during Covid-19 looks a little like this (granted I have some days off and I ensure that I have time to myself, where the thought of University work does not even enter my brain):

8.00am – Mondays – Fridays I ensure that I set an alarm. I like to have a routine as I feel unproductive if I lie in bed too late. Now the first thing I do is get myself a cup of tea, this sets me up for the day! I have become partial to following a Joe Wicks exercise every weekday morning with a family member in my household (I think I do more exercise now than what I did prior to lockdown).

10.00am – After I have had my cup of tea and I feel fully awake, I check my University email/ Blackboard and write a ‘to-do list’. At the moment, I have written one which shows all the topics I need to write revision notes for.  

12.00pm – I have an online lecture through the Microsoft Teams app. 

These have been a great way to see all the members from my cohort, whilst going over lecture notes that we have previously written. This gives all the students an opportunity to ask any burning questions.

1.00pm – Time for food! I am grateful to be back at home over lockdown, so cooking is not on my agenda! Although, I do enjoy a bit of baking and I have recently made mars bar cookies, chocolate chip cookies, millionaires shortbread and cheese scones (and yes… I am a dental student – everything in moderation, you are allowed four sugar hits per day!). 

1.30pm – Break time, this usually consists of me scouring social media and then making another cup of tea.

2.00pm – Back to work. Recently the workload has been quite intense as I have been prepping for a Radiology and Radiography exam. This will be my first online exam. I am a little bit nervous, but I am sure everything will run smoothly. We have been given the opportunity to complete a mock exam in the format of the summative exam – so we have an idea of what to expect with regards to the format of the exam.

6.00pm – Finish up for the day. Like I said earlier, try and finish at the time that you would usually finish your lectures at University. Occasionally, I may work a little later during exam periods, but definitely no later than 7.00pm.

6.00pm onwards – Time to relax! Have some tea (as we say up North) and take the time to unwind. Do what you enjoy. Watch some trashy TV, play on your videogame, watch YouTube, read a book, have a nice relaxing bath. You choose, but make sure that you make time for yourself and for your mental health during these times.

Let us make the most of this time and try to make the best out of this situation. I can’t wait to go back to University, how about you?

By Tamsyn McKenna.