Universities are starting their online classes soon – here are 5 tips to help students get back into the swing of things

University student studying (PHOTO: 
Igor Alecsander/Getty Images)
University student studying (PHOTO: Igor Alecsander/Getty Images)
Igor Alecsander

As the lockdown continues for South Africans, universities across the country have started their remote learning and teachings programmes, giving students a bit more clarity on how their degrees are going to pan out this year.

Read more: ‘I had a virtual graduation ceremony because of coronavirus – and this is how it felt’

Wits announced on Twitter that their second term will start on 20 April. The university has also put measures in place for students to loan devices – this will help students who don’t have access to laptops and/or smartphones at home.


The University of Cape Town has created a student access survey that will help identify students who might need extra help in accessing the academic work they’ll be receiving.

With many universities soon to be back in full swing, just online this time, here are five tips to help you get back into work-mode:

Create a routine for yourself

This doesn’t have to be like the one you had when you were on campus. Create a timetable similar to the one you had at the beginning of the year and tweak it; stick to those times for the rest of the lockdown period. Each person knows how long their concentration span is. Your breaks should be at the same time each day and for a set period.

Let the people you live with know about the situation

Family members can easily distract you by telling you to “quickly do something” for them or by making a noise. Alert them about the plans your university has made and give them your schedule. This will give both you and them peace of mind.

Create a specific workspace

Some people are used to working in the library or at their desk in res. Find a spot you’re the most comfortable to work at and use it for work only. Decorate it too if that’s something you like to do. Make sure you don’t watch series or scroll through Twitter in that space as this will distract you.

Don’t forget to take breaks in between

Try not to overwork yourself by studying for long hours and then finally resting at the end of the day. Take some time to stretch your legs, make something to eat or even call your friends and/or partner. Make sure you don’t do something you know will distract you too much or lead to procrastination.

Always remember to ask for help and offer help

This is the time where privilege separates a lot of students. Being at home is different to being on campus where all the things you need for your assignments are nearby. Don’t be afraid to ask somebody to help you out and if you’re being asked for help, try to lend a hand. It isn’t easy for anybody and right now is the time to be working together.