4 pandemic study tips for UVic students

Lifestyle Sports | Lifestyle

How to manage school while stuck at home

study tips graphic
Graphic by Sie Douglas-Fish.

This year, most UVic students will be attending their classes from home. This new reality has made it hard for many of us to find work-life balance. However, that balance can still be achieved through hard work, perseverance, and a good study space. 

The Martlet is here to give you all the tips you will need to weather pandemic studying. 

Create a designated study space

Creating a designated study space is of paramount importance for university students. Even if getting out of the house isn’t possible, be it for health or transport concerns, there are still ways  students can separate work and play. 

One option is to find a comfortable spot at the kitchen table and turn it into a work-only zone. The blog sparefoot.com suggests turning an old armoire or dresser into a makeshift desk. Even just studying at the foot of the bed instead of on it can help create mental separation between your study and life spaces. 

Tidy up your workspace

It can also be helpful to clean up and put away materials at the end of the day to prevent clutter and constantly thinking about work or school.

When trying to set up a study space at home, if possible, make it separate from the rest of the day’s workspace. For example, attend or watch lectures and take notes from one space, and try to study and do flashcards from a different spot. If it is not possible to separate these spaces, make sure to clean up any notes or study materials from other classes to limit distractions. 

Study on campus 

While leaving the house might be uncomfortable for some, there are a limited number of study spaces open on campus. Although the library’s study spaces are largely closed,, Biblio in the McPherson Library has 37 study spots available. These study spots must be booked three days in advance and are available for three-hour time slots. There is a very limited amount of spaces for drop-in, so your best bet would be to book in advance.

The law library is also available to UVic students and booking in advance works the same way as BiblioCafé. There are about the same number of study spaces. Besides the libraries, there is also the Student Union Building (SUB). The SUB’s Upper Lounge and Vertigo room are both open, and there is some seating set up throughout the rest of the building.

Come prepared

Studying on campus can help your productivity, but it does require a little preparation. The McPherson and law libraries both recommend that students wear a mask and bring their own water bottles. The law library also does not allow students to bring in food.

Speaking from personal experience, if you’d like to study in the SUB, make sure to go early to get a comfortable place to work — otherwise, go equipped with patience, as seating is limited and fills up quickly. It can take hours before seats reopen. Also make sure that whichever laptop or device that you are using has enough charge, as there is limited access to outlets inside the SUB.

For now, the best option is to try to work from home or on campus. Many small restaurants and cafés are still only offering takeout services, and the search involved in trying to find a good one that will remain open might take too long.

Work and school will look very different this year, but there are ways to get through it without being too overwhelmed. Prioritize mental health, especially when trying to balance life, work, school and rest during a global pandemic.