Credit: Wes Hicks on Unsplash

As learning has shifted from face-to-face to mostly online this year, many journalism students have had to learn to adapt to this new way of e-learning.

Although not ideal, there are ways to ensure you are still getting the most of this new way of teaching so that you can pass your exams, ace your dissertation and of course still get your money’s worth.

Journalism.co.uk asked students who are sharing your pain their best piece of advice on how to survive and get the most out of online lectures.

Put your phone away

This may seem a little patronising but without trying to sound like your secondary school teacher, making sure you have no distractions is giving yourself the best chance to take in every word that your lecturer is saying.

Keeping your phone next to you makes it far too tempting to click on a notification or text that pops up. Once you start scrolling it is hard to stop until you realise 20 minutes has gone by and you have absolutely no idea what was just discussed.

Find a quiet space

Finding somewhere with no distracting surroundings will make focusing a lot easier. It is best not to watch online lectures with your friends, unless you have all agreed to be ultra-focused. Otherwise, you will probably end up chatting and missing important parts of the lecture.

Put your camera on

During face-to-face lectures, obviously no one is worried about showing their face but there is something about staring at a webcam that makes students want to run a mile. But putting your camera on means that the lecturer will be able to see that you are concentrating, which makes you more likely to get involved in discussions and avoid distractions.


It is well known that meditation can help with stress and mental health. However, it has also been proven to improve focus and concentration. Refining these skills is especially important when surviving online lectures because you are likely going to have to listen for over an hour.

Give feedback

E-learning is not just new to students – it is mostly new to the lecturers too. This means that they will welcome feedback. Discussing with them what works well and what does not means that they are able to refine their teaching to make lectures more engaging for their students. If you do not feel comfortable speaking to them directly, talk to your subject/course representatives, who can relay the feedback.

Enjoy it

Finally, make the most out of your e-learning and enjoy it. Unfortunately we all have to sit tight at the moment and make the best out of a bad situation, so it is important to utilise the creativity, freedom and learning experience that online lectures can give you.

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