6 Tips for Staying Engaged in Class

By Victoria Robertson on November 30, 2017

When it comes to staying focused during your classes, especially around this time of the year, it can be very difficult. Classes are currently winding down just before finals hit and your attention span along with them. In fact, one of the toughest parts of this time of year is saying motivated, and that begins with your engagement.

For that reason, it’s very important that you remain engaged in your classes until the end of the semester. With that in mind, here are six ways to stay engaged in class.

via Pixabay

1. Don’t browse

One of the biggest distractions in the classroom is your laptop. For many, laptops are used to take notes during class. However, when you’re opening different tabs and shopping, scrolling through Buzzfeed or Pinterest, or messaging your friends, you’re not getting anything out of the lecture you’re attending.

One of the best things you can do is turn off your Wi-Fi so that you’re unable to access any of those distracting websites. If you need the internet, simply refrain from opening other tabs or use an app that blocks certain websites during specific times so you can prevent any such distractions.

2. Turn off the phone

Another common culprit when it comes to distracting students is the cellphone. More often than not, students find themselves checking their phones during class at least once. Other students end up to texting, checking social media sites and playing games during class.

To avoid such distractions, simply turn off your cell phone while you’re in class. You can also always simply put the phone on silent and zip it in your bag so that it’s not a distraction for you. Basically, whatever you need to do to keep it out of reach, do it!

3. Ask questions

One of the easiest ways to stay engaged during class is to ask questions. By actively thinking of questions to ask throughout the lecture, you’re automatically staying involved and following the topic of conversation.

You don’t necessarily have to go into class with questions at the ready, but rather, as your professor is lecturing, come up with a few questions or thoughts that you can share with the class or ask on your own time afterwards.

4. Do the assignments

This probably seems like a common-sense response, but simply completing assignments in full and on time is going to play a big part when it comes to keeping you engaged during class. For example, in some classes, simply doing the reading can set you ahead of the rest of the class and help you to better understand the material being covered.

When you’re prepared for class, you’re much more likely to retain and understand the information presented to you in class, which will, in turn, help you to remain focused throughout the entirety of the class. Basically, be on time with your assignments and make sure you’re completing them in full!

5. Take handwritten notes

Taking notes is very important in class, and many students opt to use their laptops in the modern age of technology. For some classes, such as bigger lectures, this is probably the most ideal method of note-taking.

However, that being said, taking handwritten notes is one of the best ways to stay engaged with your class and to truly avoid any distractions. It’s a proven method of studying, as writing your notes by hand allows you to better retain the information you’re taking in.

When you’re typing, you can simply repeat information as you hear it, in one ear and out the other. However, with handwritten notes, students are taking the time to process and then reiterate subject matter in their own words, which is a better overall method when it comes to retaining information.

6. Stay after class

While this isn’t always necessary or helpful, sometimes staying after class offers you an opportunity to go over the information discussed with your professor, ask questions or simply ask for clarification on a point made during lecture. Staying after class gives you that extra opportunity to process the information you were given in class and to ensure that said information is retained beyond class as well.

Again, staying engaged when it comes to your classes is not easy. More often than not, winter brings with it a slip in your attention span, which can make studying for finals all the more difficult. For that reason, follow these six tips to make sure you’re staying engaged with your classes. This is the time of year where it’s essential that you keep your foot on the gas, so as long as you’re keeping these six tips in mind during your classes, you’ll be sure to come out on top this semester!

Victoria is a dedicated writer who graduated from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She currently writes freelance pieces for various sites and works in Marketing for Myndbee Inc., promoting their current mobile app, Picpal.

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