With university strikes happening up and down the country, it is highly likely that yourself or someone that you know is experiencing hardly any or no university at all.
Not only can this be extremely stressful, but for third year students, no lectures or catch up is rather terrifying.
Try not to worry; here are a few handy tips, from ideas to effectively work through the strike action, to top tips on how to get studying.
Tips for dealing with the strike
#Make a list of everything that you want to ask your tutor
With the strike on, most tutors have flicked off their emails. This can be slightly worrying when you need to ask all your relevant course questions and also when you wish to inquire about your dissertation. A good idea is to write down everything that you need to know and keep it in a word document. When your lecturer opens their email back up on non-strike days, you can quickly send it through and hopefully get the answers that you need.
#Keep up to date on strike action
Make sure that you follow all the relevant information on strike action. If you are aware of which days that the strike is not happening on, you can always pop into university and attend your tutor’s office hours.
#Organise some study groups
If you are struggling to concentrate without weekly lectures and seminars, then a great idea is to organise a study group session in your library or even in the room where the actual seminar usually takes place. Start up a group chat and get as many students as you can to come in and have a few hours discussing topics, running through ideas or problems and giving each other advice. With the strikes set to possibly head into exam season, this can be a great idea closer to exams as well.
#Make a to do list
With no lectures and seminars, it can feel like you have no structure in your academic life. A brilliant way to get round this worry is to make your own to do list and maybe even your own time table. Following your own rules can work to prevent any additional stress.
#Express your opinion
If you feel like you are really being affected by the strikes, then remember that it is always important to express your opinion. Course administrator emails stay open over striking season so feel free to email them whenever you wish so that they can hopefully address any concerns that you may have.
Tips for studying at home
#Work in university buildings, not at home
Of course, this depends entirely on personal preference, but I find that working at home offers a wide variety of distractions that I always fall victim to. By getting up and into the library, the only thing to really do is work.
# Pack a good lunch
One of the main issues when heading to the library is the worry of what to get for lunch. For students strapped for cash, it can be really frustrating to have to spend nearly five pounds each day on lunch. A great way to get around this, and to save time is to prep your lunch the night before, this way you don’t have to leave your work station and you save money.
# Make a time table
Through making a regular time table you can ensure that you can manage your time effectively. It will also stop those feelings of guilt rising when you are not studying, because you have already put aside the time for work.
# Have regular breaks
Make sure that you have short, regular breaks in order to keep alert. A great motivator can be to save small YouTube clips to watch in your break or to work out the snacks that you are going to enjoy. Spend twenty minutes not looking at your work and take the time to re fuel, when it’s over, you will hopefully be eager to start working again.
# Make your work colourful
Make your work as colourful as you want! Mind maps in ten different highlighter colours and bullet points in stars, making your revision or your notes eye catching will mean that you are more likely to remember what you put down on the page.
# Listen to instrumental music
A great tip for studying is to listen to instrumental music. Music with words tends to get a little confusing but instrumental music has been proven to enhance performance and memory. In a study carried out by The University of Dayton they found that students performed better with instrumental music playing quietly in the background than those who had no music, check out the study here.
# Switch off social media
A great tip is to flick off your phone and even put it away in a drawer, it can be a motivator to do some work, as when you’ve finished you can sit down for a good scroll and a cuppa.
# Explain your work to others
I’ve often found myself feeling like I am learning absolutely nothing, yet when I decide to tell a family member or a friend about my study topic, they tend to tell me that I know everything!
Sitting down and chatting about your topic often results in a lot more information coming out of your head than you were aware was in there and it can be a great confidence booster.