Tips for learning

Get helpful tips for being a successful college learner, including information and tips on academic integrity, study habits, time management, and motivation.  

On this page:

Watch: Tips for learning in a virtual and remote environment from Mohawk Alumni Carly

Carly is a college alumni, and a current employee. She has some great tips to share about learning in a virtual and remote environment from her own student experience.


Start the semester off right 

  1. Print out or take a screenshot your class schedule so you can plan your week  
  2. Try to get into a routine with online class and studying 
  3. Try to start assignments as soon as possible so you don’t get behind 
  4. Break larger assignments into smaller, more manageable tasks
  5. Try to balance your weekly schedule with both studying and fun activities to help manage stress 
  6. Register with Accessible Learning Services if you feel you need accommodations 
  7. Connect with counselling if you feel like you are struggling
  8. Take the Be More Pledge

Study Habits 

Tips to support your study habits as you learn in a virtual and remote environment.  

For help with studying, here are a few services you can access at Mohawk:

Staying Motivated

Tips for Focus in a Digital Environment

  • Tune into classes on the right device. If possible, try to set yourself up in a place where you will be comfortable for the duration of class.
  • Ensure devices and software are up-to-date to minimize the possibility of tech issues
  • Make sure your virtual environment is distraction free. Turn off the TV, situate yourself in a quiet space away from roommates and/or pets, etc.
  • Make sure you have eaten before class starts, and have healthy snacks available during class to maintain your energy and mental function
  • Engage do-not-disturb mode on your devices, and resist the urge to check emails, texts or apps during class
  • Take notes during class to stay engaged with what your instructor is saying. Having notes to return to after class will also help you to better recall what happened in class
  • If you had an academic accommodation or IEP in high school, reach out to Accessible Learning Services by emailing als [at] We are here to support your academic needs!
  • If you are experiencing difficulty managing notes, studying or time management, Mohawk College has trained counsellors who can assist you with your academic progress. Email: counselling [at] to set up an intake


Learning in a virtual and remote environment is different than learning in-person. Some of these differences may include: an increased interaction with technology; additional flexibility in your schedule; or competing demands on your time. Check out The Learning Portal's Staying Motivated resource to help you stay motivated as you learn in this new environment.

Time Management

Resources to help you manage your time: 

Breaks & Exercise 

To maintain a healthy balance, healthy mind and motivation, taking breaks and finding ways to work self-care and exercise into your routine will really help.  

The Science of Taking a Break 

Regular exercise changes the brain to improve memory, thinking skills


Minimize Eye Strain

Remember the 20-20-20 Rule! For every 20 minutes on a screen, spend 20 seconds looking at something nearby (not on the screen) and 20 seconds looking at something far away.

Keep Moving

Activities that you can do at your desk:


Stay Full & Hydrated

  • You can’t work when you’re Hangry!
  • Make sure to take breaks to eat and keep your water bottle full
  • Water increases blood flow and oxygen to the brain which improves concentration!

Virtual Self-Advocacy 

Self-advocacy is the action of representing oneself or one's views or interests. Here are some tips for self-advocacy in a virtual and remote learning environment.

Ways to Practice Self-Advocacy in the Virtual Classroom

Self-Advocacy for College Students 

For more information on virtual self-advocacy, or additional resources if you have or think you may have a disability, contact Accessible Learning Services

Academic Integrity

Mohawk College promotes and values Academic Integrity in all forms of learning. For more information check out the Academic Integrity website with resources for students and an online module.

Digital Skills Toolkit  

The Digital Skills Toolkit  provides resources to help you develop digital skills for use at school, home and the workplace. Set yourself up for success with the resources in this course. 

Self-Register into the Digital Skills Toolkit in MyCanvas – Open Courses. Access to MyCanvas is provided to all registered students who have selected their timetables.