Mustafa’s online learning diary: top tips for remote study

11 August 2020
A student talking to a friend socially distanced with face masks

Mustafa from Pakistan is one of our students who continued their International Study Centre education online and will be progressing to Durham University in September – check out how he adapted to studying remotely at the beginning of his final term.

 It is the 18th day of my quarantine. Academic staff are working restlessly to keep the students motivated and working to support us in every way. This week was reading week here at Durham University International Study Centre. We have used the time to familiarise ourselves with online learning. The updates and emails we received from staff answer every question before we’ve even asked!

We receive guidelines from our tutors through Durham University Online (DUO). I access DUO on the My Durham app on my mobile phone or through my computer. Continuing my studies and accomplishing my goals would not be possible without the support we’re all receiving. Everyone is in the same situation, including the staff, but the whole team is working enthusiastically to keep our studies and progression their priority.We are extremely lucky that we are able to continue our studies, so I’m here to share some useful tips I’ve learnt during lockdown.

1. Keep happy and motivated
Happiness has a multiplier effect when distributed. Look for the positives; studying online means we have plenty of extra time now, compared to studying on campus. By making a daily timetable and to-do lists to organise our activities, we’re still able to meet our deadlines.

2. Don’t be distracted
Your mobile phone is your enemy, so keep it away while you are studying! I download all the important documents, PDFs and PowerPoints I’ll need beforehand. While reading or writing, I keep my devices on airplane mode.

3. Keep track of your projects
Receiving so much information can sometimes leave a student overwhelmed. Make notes as you receive an online task so you can prioritise them respective to their deadlines. Make sure that you do one thing at a time, as this will improve productivity.

4. Look after yourself
Don’t forget to take breaks and keep yourself physically active. Keep yourself warm and hydrated too. It is important for all the vital organs and for a better immune system. You should also make sure not to get too excited with this lockdown and stay up all night watching interesting stuff – you still need plenty of sleep.

The International Study Centre team is working hard for us and they deserve our best efforts. Committing to our studies is a gesture of gratitude and appreciation for our tutors and welfare and student experience teams. So, let’s not waste our time and let’s not waste our positive energy. Always keep in mind that “success is not final, failure is not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts”.

To find out more about studying with us, check out our programmes pages to see see how we can help you study at a top-ranking UK university.

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