How to stay focused on school after Zoom classes

Jacqueline Gutierrez, Assistant Opinions Editor

Working and learning from home has its pros and cons. For example, a pro is getting to dress however you want and eating whenever you want to. But there are also many cons, and one of them includes being easily distracted.  

Here are some tips to stay focused and motivated during the semester online.

 Setting aside a designated time 

Whether it is for school or work, it is important to set aside a specific time do your work and this may help you adapt to the new normal. It is also important because if you set a designated time, you are more likely to work for that class in that given time frame.  

“Balancing my schedule this semester has been struggle, but I’m adjusting well… I also review my notes more than I did while being in person. I have also taken a day off work, so I can spend my day fully focusing on my school work only,” Tiffani Iniguez, a senior at California State University, Bakersfield said.  

Creating a work environment 

Since you are at home, it is easy to drift to the sofa or your bed, but that is not the best environment for studying or working. One usually relaxes in those spots, so it may be a little difficult to concentrate in those areas. Some people do not have a desk, but you can clean up a corner of a table or counter where you have enough space to do your work. As long as you are seated upright with your supplies around you, it should be fine.  

Setting your devices aside 

One thing that may be hard but necessary is silencing or setting aside the devices that you are not using for school and work. Many have other priorities that cause them to have their phone turned up, but it may be helpful if you silence notifications other than the ones you are going to need. And if you have a bad habit of getting on your phone while studying or doing homework, there are apps and features to help you stay off your phone.  


Since you may not see your professor, or their main form of communication is email, it is easy to forget about important due dates or tests, and to prevent that, a planner can be very beneficial. One thing that might be helpful is choosing a day where you prepare yourself and write down all the important dates that are in the syllabus and contacting your professor ahead of time if you have any questions.  

It is important to plan your study and work time when you work best. For example, if you are a night owl, plan a bulk of your work then, and incorporate longer breaks into your planner because it will improve your studying, according to The Learning Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill website.    

Reward yourself  

Being behind a screen all day is not easy, and it is important to take mental breaks. When you finish reading a chapter or doing an assignment, you should get up and stretch, eat a snack, walk around or even lay down and take a nap. After you take a mental break and prepare yourself to get back to work, you will probably have a much easier time concentrating.  

You may have different strategies to overcome the challenges that you might face during the online semesters and incorporating these suggestions with your strategies you will be more successful.