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Becky Kuhn, Deidre Sizer, and Kim Ahlgrim from The Cove.

Tips for Online Learners During the Pandemic

by Clem Boyd, Communication Content Manager

How do students who were just learning in classrooms, sitting next to friends and asking questions of professors standing a few feet in front of them make the sudden switch to all-online learning?

To answer questions about this rapid change and how to manage it successfully, professional staff from Cedarville University’s academic enrichment center, The Cove, provided tips during a livestreamed town hall April 1. Cedarville’s town hall series can be found on the university’s Facebook page and past town halls can be found on the COVID-19 Updates Blog.

Those speaking during the town hall were Kim Ahlgrim, director of The Cove; Deidre Sizer, tutoring and office coordinator; and Becky Kuhn, coordinator for academic engagement and assistant professor for developmental education.

Tips for Online Learners During COVID-19 Pandemic

1. Choose to believe you are capable of growing through diligent effort. Researcher Carol Dweck used growth mindset and fixed mindset to describe how we approach a specific task or life. You either believe you can do it with hard work or you cannot do it and will not even try.

2. Motivation is moving forward regardless of how you feel. Having a healthy mindset is a springboard to motivation. Set a goal, break it into small components and move forward.

3. Communicate often with your professors and with classmates. Ease of access to faculty and friends has changed, but they still want to help, talk with you and walk you through this challenging time.

4. Get help when you need it. Services like The Cove are still open, so email for assistance. To set up a tutoring appointment, go to Cove Tutoring Appointment System. If you face challenges beyond the norm, reach out to a professional.

5. Create your own study session with friends. Use online face-to-face tools like Zoom, Google Meet or Hangouts, Facetime, and other apps to meet with classmates. This interaction helps maintain your needed community.

6. Focus on one task at a time. Use the Pomodoro Technique and set a timer on your phone for 25 minutes and during that time, just work on that one task. Then go to the next item.

7. Work for 50 minutes then take 10 minutes off for fun. Our brains need a break, especially in the intensity of distance learning and the global crisis.

8. Remember to re-energize. There are many virtual experiences that will keep you energized - concerts, museums, national parks, zoos, etc. Go enjoy.

9. Focus on the bigger picture. For Cedarville students, turning to God has been pivotal to handling this pandemic. Trusting him and resting in his peace are vital for a healthy perspective and well-being in life.

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 4,380 undergraduate, graduate and online students in more than 150 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings and high student engagement ranking. For more information about the University, visit

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