Tips for Online Learning

Communicate—a lot.

  • Check Canvas often for updates. Instructors are encouraged to use Canvas to keep you informed. Your instructors will contact you with information regarding scheduled tests and exams.
  • After checking Canvas, if you aren’t sure how and when your classes will be held, reach out to your instructors directly via email. 
  • Contact the UITS Support Center if you have questions about tech tools.
  • If offered, participate in virtual office hours over Zoom.
  • Keep in touch with classmates, including having regularly scheduled check-ins or study groups, similar to what you did on campus. You can use Zoom for these meetings.

Stay organized.

  • Take the time to put together the schedule and expectations for each of your classes. Check Canvas for updates to your syllabus.
  • Prioritize your work. What due dates are coming up first? Make a smart decision about how to best spend your time.
  • Don't procrastinate. You won't have the same sense of accountability you did when you had a regular class schedule, and it may take longer to do assignments online than you may think. Make yourself a schedule that puts you well ahead of deadlines.
  • If you are working on group projects, work with teammates to identify timelines and assignments. Using a shared Boxnote or Google Doc is a good way to keep organized, promote accountability, and share work in progress.

Take care of yourself.

  • Stay healthy by getting adequate rest, nutrition, and exercise. Schedule time to take care of yourself.
  • Stay connected to friends and classmates online—to study, to offer each other support, and to keep from feeling isolated. You can create your own Zoom meetings to start study groups or have study breaks.
  • Learn how to manage stress as you adapt to new circumstances. For advice, read the resources in Healthcare, well-being, and social connections.
  • Find some time for fun and laughter—talking online to family and friends, helping younger family members with home schooling, coloring to reduce stress, watching a comedy special online... whatever gives you a boost.

Manage your environment.

  • Schedule specific times in your day to dedicate to studying or participating in your online class. Check with your instructor if you should be calling into live Zoom broadcasts.
  • Don't try to multitask. Research shows it doesn't really work, making tasks take longer and leading to mistakes. Instead, make blocks of time to focus on one class task at a time.
  • Consider using the "Do Not Disturb" function on your devices when you are trying to minimize distractions.
  • Find a space that is comfortable and allows you to focus. This can be your home base for coursework.

Ask for help.

  • Need tech support? We've got that, too. 
  • If you need learning accommodations, you can request help from the Disability Resource Office for your home campus.
  • If you're feeling stressed or anxious, your campus health center can help you identify mental health resources to help you.
  • Contact your instructor for resources specific to your courses.

IU Online Keep Learning Course

Keep up with the latest resources for online learning at IU with this free, non-credit Canvas course in IU Expand.

Enroll in Keep Learning at IU