COVID-19 has brought some major changes to Albion College, one of the biggest being the module system. Even though only having two classes at a time should, theoretically, work out to be the same workload as a normal semester, students are finding that it just isn’t that simple.
The way that students study has changed significantly in the last six months. They are facing challenges with staying focused and managing time productively even more than in a regular semester.
Kymberlee-Celes Strozier-Ball, a sophomore from Troy, said that studying was definitely harder in the new system.
“I would say harder because everything goes by so quickly and when you do study, you have so much to study for because it’s not really two days’ worth of work: it’s a week’s worth of work,” said Strozier-Ball.
Many other students, including Noah Keck, a sophomore from Frisco, Texas, have also expressed this opinion. Keck said that, due to the large amount of work he’s assigned daily, it takes much more time for him to study than it used to.
“Previously, I would do an assignment or two, like, just in an hour I’d be able to get a class done and every day I would have a different class of homework that I did.,” said Keck. “But with the module system, I pretty much have to do all classes every day to actually manage to get all the homework done.”
Because there is so much work to do, students are finding it easier to get overwhelmed and harder to focus. Fortunately, with every problem comes a solution, and these same students have no shortage of ideas.
Destiny Okon, a junior from Los Angeles, said that it was easy to get overwhelmed with so much to do and that breaks were important to keep her calm.
“If I feel myself getting super overwhelmed, then I just, like, I have to walk away,” said Okon.
Many students have found that taking a break by scrolling through social media, taking a walk, talking with friends, or even just moving to a different study space for a change of scenery has helped give their mind a break and a chance to calm down before they start studying again.
In the module system, classes that are meant to be taught in 14 weeks are crammed into seven. This causes problems retaining information because there is so much to learn in such a short amount of time.
“I have to take notes and I have to go over those notes if that makes sense, and I have to look at the recorded lectures, you know? I never really had to do that before, but I like to know that I didn’t miss anything because the days are flying by,” said Strozier-Ball.
These are all things students do if they’re having trouble remembering or understanding things. They take notes and go over them, highlight the main points of assigned readings and watch any recorded lectures on the subject they’re struggling with.
The modules have been difficult, to say the least, but Albion students have proven themselves ready to rise to the challenge. They’ve been able to adapt their habits to fit a more time-consuming schedule and have worked out new ways to keep their stress levels down. They’re ready to face this semester head-on and come out on the other side tired, but proud.
Hope Morrissi, a senior from Okemos, said that students knowing themselves and figuring out the particular things that keep them motivated is the key to successful studying.
“The most important thing is to find a system that really works for you,” said Morrissi.