Ways I make online learning work for me

Written by Helena Thornton, Student Digital Champion

Helena Thornton

When I started university, we were in the murky depths of the pandemic. It wasn’t the transition anyone had envisaged! Alongside the expected changes: moving away from home, living in halls in a new city etc, came the less anticipated move to (almost) complete online learning. I was used to an all-in-person sixth-form approach, so this was a lot to get used to.

For better or for worse, much of my teaching has remained online this year, and so alongside the significant focus on independent learning at Uni (also online!), I have had plenty of time to get used to online learning since I began University in 2020. My learning styles and strategies are still far from perfect, but I have spent time and effort finding ways to make online learning work for me. I thought it would be helpful to share some of these; they might be things you could try, or might give you an idea of how to customise your own learning to suit your individual needs and preferences.

Planning!

University is full of juggling commitments, different assignments, lectures, social plans, general life activities, etc. I find it impossible to keep it all stored in my head: if I’m going to do it, it needs to be written down.

As a result, I find making to-do lists really helpful. I choose to do these on my computer, so that they are right there when I log on for the day. I have an Apple laptop, and use an app called ‘Stickies’, which lets me make coloured sticky notes to display on my desktop. They look great, and – even better – are completely unavoidable when I’m on my computer!

For PCs, there is a similar application called Sticky Notes.

To do lists on my desktop

Mind Maps

I have tried a number of different ways to organise my thoughts and notes when preparing an essay or other assignment, and I have found mind maps the ideal tool to help me capture different trains of thought, or different elements of a project. They are also a great way to visualise information – much more user-friendly than a block of text!

Like to-do lists, mind maps can be made by hand, but I have found websites and software that make them so much easier to create and share. When done digitally, they are also a lot more visually appealing, and you can move things around and add/delete as much as you would like.

Mindmap made on Miro Mindmap made on MindView

I currently use paid-for software called Mindview* to create mind maps, however, there are a lot of free alternatives online. One that I particularly like is Miro, a free website with mind mapping and brainstorm templates you can use individually, or collaboratively with a team.

Keeping it varied

They say that a change is as good as a break. Why not use both?! When I started my degree online, I quickly found that I was spending endless hours stuck in my room hunched over my computer, and it began to feel very monotonous and unengaging. Don’t let yourself get stuck in that trap post-pandemic! If online and independent learning still make up a large part of your timetable, take it upon yourself to find ways to keep your learning varied, and keep yourself engaged.

One way I do this is by moving around between chunks of time spent studying. Sometimes I take my work from one study space to another, or between a café and the library. This way, I am less likely to zone out and lose productivity, having sat at the same desk for hours on end. If I don’t feel like moving my workspace, I take the time to go on a short walk in a break from studying, so that I can get a smaller change of scene. This doesn’t work for everyone, but for me, the shift in environment keeps me on my toes.

I miss my library image
Taken from imissmylibrary.com

If you aren’t able to move around during the working day, but still want to capture that change-in-environment effect, you could try using different online study-environment websites. These can offer soundtracks/pictures that simulate the different study spaces I mentioned. Some of my favourites are ‘I Miss my Café’ and ‘I Miss my Library’, which create adjustable background noises to study to. The library option also includes a built-in to-do-list tool to help you keep productive.

It’s important to remember that just because these work for me, doesn’t mean they are right for everybody. Everyone has their own preferred ways of working, and so will have a different experience with any tool or type of study. However, finding a few study techniques you can go back to time and time again can be a really helpful way of making your study habits more personalised, productive and enjoyable. I have also listed below a few other resources I have found useful – I hope you find some that work well for you, too!

Other helpful digital tools for university work:

Connected Papers: for researching papers and assignments

Canva: for creating posters & graphics

Liner: for highlighting online webpages

Cold Turkey: for blocking other online distractions when working

Purdue OWL: contains so much referencing information!!

 

*Mindview: this is a paid-for software, however is available to all students on University computers. If you make use of these to study, I would recommend giving Mindview a try! Otherwise, Miro is a great – free – alternative.

Digital tools for a greener you!

Written by Souwoon Cho, Digital Education Developer.

The 22nd of April is Earth Day  DigiTalk are expanding our focus from the learning environment to the wider environment that we live. While concern for the environment, also known as Eco-anxiety continues to grow, it can be hard to know what positive action we can realistically take.

Climate change

Here are some digital tools to help you make your day-to-day life more sustainable.

Looking upwards at trees

Be aware of your carbon footprint

The first step to making positive change is to have an awareness of your current situation. Take WWF’s carbon footprint calculator for a quick and user-friendly assessment of your current impact on the environment. It also gives you a breakdown of your results and tips to reduce your impact.

A laptop next to a glass with a leaf in it

Plant trees while you search the web

You are likely to have heard or said the phrase “Just Google it”, which reflects the dominance of one search engine in everyday use. But have you tried Ecosia?

Visually, Ecosia looks just like what you would expect from a search engine. But in the background, every time you search, at least 80% of the profits generated from advertisements are donated to non-profit tree planting organisations around the world. The University of Glasgow made Ecosia their default search engine on campus in 2020, and the University of Bristol switched theirs to Ecosia in 2021. So, with an estimated 45 searches need to plant one tree, are you prepared to make the switch?

Man sitting on money

Engage in the circular economy

Food waste and fast fashion impact the wider environment but also make a dent in your pocket! Apps such as OLIO, Good to Go and Freegle help you connect with businesses and others in your community to minimise the amount of food, clothes and furniture going into landfill. It’s also a great way to grab your next meal or some furniture for your student accommodation at a reduced price or even for free!

So, what do you think you will try?  Do you have any other digital tools to suggest?
Let us know in the comments below.

Further resources:

Digital Skills and Employability: Where to Start

Written by Amy Preston, Student Digital Champion

Amy Preston

Why are digital skills important in the workplace? 

Now that we are emerging from a 2-year pandemic, many companies are moving back towards hybrid or in-person working. However, you’d still be hard pushed to find a job description that doesn’t have digital skills on their list of requirements. Even non-technical and non-office-based jobs require some degree of digital literacy. Recent surveys exhibited on the government website have shown that essential digital skills (things like communicating, handling information and online safety) are required across low, medium and high-skilled occupations. And competency in Microsoft Office is generally required for entry into medium and high-skilled jobs (which graduates typically join). However, it’s not just basic digital skills students need to be thinking about – different jobs require different specialist technological skills, which future employees need to think about when trying to boost their CV. For example, specific requirements for a job as a patent attorney will be notably different to one in marketing – one may require knowledge of online safety and privacy, whereas the other will emphasize creativity.  

What are the JISC digital capabilities and JISC discovery? 

Because digital skills and employability go hand-in-hand, you may want to look at JISC’s six elements of digital capabilities below. These are the key digital skills looked for by employers, and very important for students (future employees!) to be aware of. Or, take a look at the reimagined JISC framework in the form of the Digital Capabilities Tree by the Student Digital Champions and DEO (Digital Education Office). A good way to find areas that you need to focus on is the JISC discovery tool, which provides a questionnaire on your digital capabilities. This will generate a report and give you ways to improve, with links to useful resources. It’s great for assessing how you can improve your digital capabilities as a student, and as it applies to jobs too, implementing these techniques now is how you will stand out as a digitally skilled candidate to employers! 

Jisc digital capabilties
Image showing JISC digital skills: information, data and media literacies, digital creation, problem solving and innovation, digital identity and wellbeing, digital communication, collaboration and participation, ICT proficiency, and digital learning and development.

How can I make my digital skills stand out when applying for jobs? 

If you know you are interested in certain jobs after you graduate, scope out adverts for them on LinkedIn, Indeed or other job listing websites to see whether they list any specific digital skill requirements for their jobs. As mentioned above, you will often see they ask for proficiency in Microsoft Office. Find how you can showcase your proficiency – for example, you may have taken the ICDL (or ECDL) exam in school, which is highly regarded by employers looking for Microsoft Office proficiency. But more importantly, consider what specific digital skills you have that match the job requirements and how you can gain skills that you don’t already have. For example, if a job wants some coding experience, there are plenty of resources available to help you. ‘Learn Python the Hard Way’ is a great free resource to use as an introduction to Python coding. Use your digital skills to do some digging and find online resources to help you gain specific expertise that will make you stand out! 

Finally, be aware of your online identity when applying to jobs. The first ‘Digitally Skilled’ video talks about what online identity is and how you can shape it. Have a look and see if there are ways that you can adjust it to improve your employability – this is an important skill in itself! 

Jisc discovery tool
Image showing an example of a JISC Discovery (circular bar plot) digital capability report.

Further resources

If you need further help with job applications, head to the Careers Service website for information on employability and bookable workshops such as CV writing and interview skills. Also look at the DEO’s resources and other DigiTalk blog posts for all things digital! Finally, best of luck in securing a job with your new and improved digital skills! 

Disability Services – Technology for Learning online workshop

Technology is being built into our day to day IT programmes to enhance our working and studying practices. Technology can help to ease and overcome challenges, it can also enable us to complete tasks quicker and with more precision.

Technology for learning – is a workshop designed to guide you through technology freely available to support you with time management and organization, reading text and note taking.

Image of an online meeting
Photo by Chris Montgomery on Unsplash

This workshop is on Tuesday April 5th 2pm – 3pm, and will be held online.

If you would like to attend you can sign up here: Technology for Learning workshop

If you would like to attend but cannot make this date then please send an email expressing your interest to: gemma.russell@bristol.ac.uk
You can find out about more of the Disability Service’s workshops on their website.

Meet our new Student Digital Champions

We are excited to announce that the DEO have recruited a new group of Student Digital Champions to work with the team for the next few months to help us improve students’ digital experience whilst at University. You can find out more about them here. If you’re a student and want to get in touch with them, get in contact with your Course Rep who will be able to put you in touch.

Helena Thornton

2nd Year, studying Psychology. Helena has worked with the DEO since July 2021.

Helena Thornton

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I have lived in 6 different countries 🙂

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

This is such a DEO question ahahaha… It has to be ‘command-t’ (‘ctrl-t’ for PC-users) to add a tab on my web browser – I always have so many tabs open!!

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

The laughing face! I laugh a lot in real life, so it’s very appropriate 😂

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

I’m not sure, my mind has now gone blank to all University acronyms and terms.

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

I can! My very first university lecture was online, and I remember it feeling so strange… The chat box was hectic, but it also felt quite isolating. It took a while to get online learning to work for me, which is a reason I’m now passionate about finding ways to make digital learning and skills-acquisition more user-friendly for others.

Sophie Shanahan

4th Year, studying German

Sophie Shanahan

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I worked as a journalist in Berlin for my year abroad last year (and very much miss it!)

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

A very boring but useful one is Ctrl + Shift + V to paste without formatting – comes in very useful when writing essays/referencing.

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

The shocked face – Surprised

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

I think I’ve managed to decipher them all by now.

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

I remember there being a ridiculous number of references to ‘unprecedented times’ and lots of people either not muting or unmuting themselves!

Bobby Joynes

1st Year, studying Film and Theatre Studies

Bobby Joynes

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I love taking photographs of pretty much anything I see and creating really weird and wacky digital collages!

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

Comand + S, ‘ctrl-s’ for PC-users, (the amount of times I’ve accidentally deleted work without saving it! This shortcut has bee an ABSOLUTE lifesaver at saving work on the go)

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

Thumbs up! Yes

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

I still mix up the definitions of Formative and Summative work, even after completing loads of essays and work!

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

My first online lecture was from Theatre and it was pretty chaotic! The lecturer wasn’t completely familiar with using Zoom and everything went a bit topsy turvy halfway through. Luckily, we were still able to get all of the notes from it in the form of a handout afterwards but organised chaos is the best way I would describe it. Everyone got a bit confused with what was happening but we were all able to learn from it and it got much better in the lectures that followed!

Amy Preston

4th Year, MRes Physiology and Pharmacology

Amy Preston

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I also do dance and climbing (although very much a beginner!)

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

Ctrl+F

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

👍 – usually to let people know I can hear them!

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

When I first got to Uni I couldn’t work out why everyone was going to ASS!

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

Not very smooth – most people had internet issues as they were at their family homes or in student housing!

Polly Davis

2nd Year, studying Environmental Geoscience

Polly Davis

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I am a Louis Theroux enthusiast- I would love to be apart of the documentary and film industry, travelling and working behind the scenes.

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

Control-command-4, I am always cropping and taking pictures of lecture slides on my computer screen!

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

👍 A thumbs up- pretty simple and effective, says a lot without saying much.

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

No, I struggle reading jargon so I always have to find out what it means before it gets too late.

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

I remember it being pretty relaxed. All my first year lectures were recorded, and so I could go at my own pace. It saved me the anxiety of walking into a lecture theatre full of people I didn’t yet know.

Georgie Pitts.

Post Grad Year 2 MA Law. Georgie has worked with the DEO since July 2021

Georgie Pitts

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I don’t like cheese (can’t get past the smell)

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

ctrl+shift+S, for speech typing, for when typing is too much effort!

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

The thumbs up! 👍

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

It was quite slow, with lots of technical issues!

Daniel Walsh

1st Year, studying Philosophy and Politics

Daniel Walsh

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I like to write songs and make music in my spare time!

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

CTRL + C and CTRL + V

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

The skull! Skull and crossbones

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

No!

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

It was interesting. There were a lot of technical difficulties at the start.

Alex Dunn

1st Year, studying Law

Alex Dunn

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

While working with the Orchard Heights JCR and SU, I handed out over 1000 condoms to students!!

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

Ctrl+Z (undo) – for when you accidentally delete your coursework!

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

🤔 (emoji that captures being puzzled) – for when you aren’t quite following along…

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

‘BBOLE’ – not sure where to start…

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

In my first online lectures, even the 9am ones, every student was very keen and had their cameras on! That didn’t stay for long… Now lecturers need to take advantage of online tools to keep people engaged. It wasn’t long before one of the lecturers brought their dog along to the call – something only possible online…

Kexin Li

PG, studying Digitalisation and Big Data Management

Kexin Li

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I’m an international student, and I did my undergraduate study in Canada. I‘ve lived in Canada for five years and I really enjoy the multicultural environment and cold winters there. It is a completely new experience and a very exciting thing for me to study in the UK as a postgraduate student, which enables me to feel the culture and history of different countries. I’ve travelled to the UK when I was in junior high school, and I was very fond of the British culture at that time, so being able to study in the UK was kind of a fulfilment of my childhood dream.

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

My favourite keyboard shortcut is absolutely Ctrl+C/V (copy and paste). I think this shortcut is very convenient and helps me a lot in my daily life and study, especially when I am writing papers and sorting out literature!

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

😂. My favourite emoji is this cute face with tears in his smile! I feel like this emoji can show my friendliness and interest, and it also amplifies the entertainment.

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

UEB. I’ve seen this acronym once, but I didn’t realise what it meant at the time.

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

I remember my first online lecture was a statistics course two years ago. Since we had just switched from on-campus courses to online courses, the lecturer were faced with some technical issues, such as screen recording and organising student group discussions. However, the overall impression to me was very fresh and interesting, because I could hear the content of the class more clearly, and it solved the problem of not seeing the projections clearly because of my poor eyesight. More importantly, this saved me the time to go to the classroom and made me have a more comfortable learning environment.

Olivia Muggleton

Final year, studying Law. Olivia has worked with the DEO since July 2021.

Olivia Muggleton

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I am dog obsessed, I have 5 German Shepherds in my family and absolutely love big breeds, they are the kindest, gentlest most amazing beings.

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

My favourite is ‘Ctrl >’ to make bullet points but I use ‘Ctrl Z’ the most.

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

Can’t go wrong with a good, reassuring thumbs up 👍

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

The unit code for any law unit begins with ‘LAWD’, I’ve never known what the D stands for, is it just random?

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

I was quite nervous my internet would go down… so obviously it did and I stressed out so much – Luckily I didn’t miss too much as it was only a welcome lecture!

Leah Parker

3rd Year, studying Biology

Leah Parker

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I’ve been vegetarian for the last 4 years!

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

Definitely my favourite (and one I use the most) is control Z – the undo shortcut

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

The classic thumbs up emoji 👍

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

It took me way too long know what MVB was…

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

I remember the first lecture was part of my Quantitative & Computation Methods unit. Usually, this unit is quite lab-based unit in terms of its teaching, so the fact it switched to completely online made it all the more strange. I remember everyone still being confused with how blackboard collaborate worked, everyone asking so many questions, people’s internet cutting out, and also me always clicking the hand-up button instead of the chat function.

Angus Robertson

4th Year, studying Dentistry

Angus Robertson

Tell us something about yourself (interesting or not!)

I also write my own music!

What is your favourite keyboard shortcut?

‘Tab’ is surprisingly useful when bullet pointing an unnecessary amount of information about teeth.

What’s your favourite emoji to use in online sessions?

I think a simple ‘thumbs up’ goes a long way. 👍

Is there a University acronym or term you’ve still never worked out what it means?

DEO… what’s that all about?

Can you remember your first online lecture? What was it like?

During the initial lockdown; very strange. I think everyone was still in shock, but our tutors transitioned relatively well based on our situation and it was nice to see everyone’s faces again!

Useful links

You can find out more about the Student Digital Champions, and see some of the work they have created on the following pages.

Find your digital balance on University Mental Health day

Written by Souwoon Cho, Digital Education Developer and new team member of the Digital Education Office.

If you haven’t heard this phrase recently, here it is: ‘Unprecedented times’. Of course, this was the go-to phrase to try and describe the impact of the pandemic on a global and personal level. A lot has changed since 2020 including more teaching and social events taking place in-person. However, the dilemma we face trying to manage the digital world and our wellbeing remains.  

You may hear of some approaches to this such as getting rid of your smartphone, deleting all social media, and not looking at e-mails for an extended period. But these approaches to eliminate screen time are not realistic for a student navigating day-to-day university life.  

So, what digital tools can help you achieve digital balance on University Mental Health Day and beyond? 

Man looking at his phone
Man looking at his phone

Digital tools for focus and motivation.

Do you ever feel distracted and constantly switching between different screens and digital tools? You are not alone! Rather than making you feel less productive, there are digital tools and apps available to help you focus on the task at hand. The list of great apps to help student’s focus and motivation by AbilityNet is a great summary of some of the tools for you to try.  

Dark mode for a better nights sleep.

Student Minds recommends avoiding your use of screen devices at least an hour before you intend to sleep as one of their tips to improve your sleep. This can be easier said than done. Another approach to ease your transition from screen to pillow is to reduce the blue light being emitted from your screens.   

You can set your screens to night or dark mode a few hours before you intend to go to sleep. Steps on how to set your display for night time mode are available for Windows and Mac. Most smartphone will also have this mode available, so check your phone’s user manual for further information.  

Image of lit up laptop in a dark room
Image of lit up laptop in a dark room

Free Yoga, HIIT, and Meditation.

Cat stretching
Cat stretching

Being physically active is one of the NHS’s 5 steps to wellbeing, but going for a run or attending an online dance class can seem like a lot of effort despite the obvious benefits. Fitness apps such as Downdog offer guided Yoga, HIIT, Meditation and even Ballet Barre sessions at your convenience. You can set the time, level and intensity of the session which gives you control to fit it around your schedule. Even a 5-minute session of chair yoga is better than nothing right? Since the pandemic, Downdog has been and is currently still available free for students. Of course, there are other similar apps available, so if this isn’t for you, explore different apps or digital tools until you find one that works for you.  

Looking after the mental health of university students and staff is not a conversation just for University Mental health day. We hope these tips will help you create ongoing positive change to the future of your mental health.  

If you have any comments or further tips to share. Post them in the comments below! We would love to hear from you.  

Further support and resources
Whether you are a staff member or student, if you feel like you are struggling, it is always good to tell someone about how you are feeling. If you don’t feel able to do this, the University has wellbeing support for staff and students. We’ve also listed some further resources below.

Student minds mental health day poster

The Digital Education Office are hiring!

Following on from the great work of our Student Digital Champions, we are keen to hire some more students to work with us through TB2.

Student Digital Champion 

The UoB Digital Education Office (DEO) are looking for passionate students to work with us to ensure that all students can get the most out of their digital and blended learning experiences at Bristol. As a Student Digital Champion, you will be talking to students, course reps and staff members to hear what is or isn’t working in our online learning environments, and identify good practice in teaching and assessment. You will be working as a team, with the DEO and other Student Digital Champions, to identify and address key challenges the student body are facing when learning in an online, blended or hybrid environment, and then propose, pilot and implement practical solutions. In addition, you’ll be adding your own personal experiences and feedback to the work of the DEO, and helping us shape the work we do in real time. To apply for this role, you need to be a current student at the University of Bristol. You’ll be working an average of 3 hours per week for three months spanning March – to the beginning of June, and we hope to provide a possibility of continuing in the role for the 2022/23 academic year.

Launching the Digitally Skilled video series!

The Student Digital Learning Experience team in the DEO are excited to announce the launch of our Digitally Skilled video series!

Digital skills are an important part of your learning, and are an area that have really taken a front and centre position on stage in the last few years.

It is estimated that, in 20 years’ time, 90% of all jobs will require people to work with digital technologies. Already, 72% of large firms struggle to recruit workers with digital skills. Quote from jisc.ac.uk

Digital skills are not only useful whilst at University, but they make up part of your development, learning and experiences you take with you into your future careers. Staff and students alike should be thinking about digital skills and taking them into consideration in their professional and personal lives.

Snap shot of digitally skilled video

The Digitally Skilled series will focus on a number of different digital skills. We want you to feel confident in understanding digital capabilities and capable to adapt and progress whilst using them in your student and further careers. We have aligned the series with the Jisc Digital Capability Framework which takes you through the six elements of digital capabilities.

Take a look, do you feel you already have some of these skills?

  • Digital identity and wellbeing
  • ICT Proficiency
  • Information, data and media literacies
  • Digital learning and development
  • Digital creation, problem solving and innovation
  • Digital communication, collaboration and participation

We first take a look at your Digital identity and wellbeing. You can find more information on what makes up this skill in the framework.

Our very first video, we hope you enjoy! Please let us know what you think.

Online Identity – Digitally Skilled video (6mins)

Image showing the starting screen of the video

Transcript:

Online identity is the social identity that you establish in online communities. Your posts, comments and reactions on online platforms you use give others an image of who you are, e.g. as a student or as a professional. You can craft your online identity to show your peers, tutors, lecturers, or even potential employers, who you are, and allow your personality and skills to shine through.

Crafting your identity:
1. Think about who you are and who you want to be.
2. Look at your current online identity on the various online platforms you use, and consider whether they reflect who you are.
3. Decide whether you need to change the privacy settings or delete any of your profiles, information, posts, images, comments or reactions.

To develop your online identity further, from now on:
1. Re-consider your content before posting to ensure your message is clear and your tone appropriate.
2. Occasionally look at combinations of items you have posted, to ensure your online identity is what you want.
3. Keep a digital record of your skills, achievements, projects or articles in a portfolio, professional network or in a document, so you can add them online later.
4. Add a profile photo to online platforms you use as a University student, to make your contributions to your peers and tutors more personal.

Think about the data you are sharing online:
1. Are you sharing too much?
2. Could the information you share be harmful to others or could anyone use that information to harm you?
3. Check what information apps and websites are collecting about you and how you can heighten your protection.

You don’t need to get your online identity right immediately. We all improve with time and practice. Start with small changes and that will get you on the right track.

Prioritise your wellbeing
It’s ok to unfollow or unfriend people if looking at their posts is negatively affecting your mental health.
Make sure you take some time away from being online and disconnect for a while.

Preparing yourself for taking exams.

Preparing yourself for taking your exams.

Exams are coming up for some students and although some of you may be on campus taking them, we know that the majority will be taking them online.  

Revising is one thing but making sure you are prepared for taking your exams is also important. The Digital Education Office (DEO) have noted down some useful information and links to help you get ready. Keep these details handy so if you run into any problems, or you need some advice, you know exactly where to go. 

'and breath' written in neon
Photo by Max van den Oetelaar on Unsplash
'treat yourself' in neon
Photo by Etienne Girardet on Unsplash

Don’t forget to take time away from your devices and revision to take a break. Wishing you loads of luck! 

The DEO team.