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Center for Student Wellbeing offers tips, resources for academic success

Oct. 19, 2020, 9:34 AM

The overall well-being of the entire Vanderbilt community is paramount. During this time, the university encourages all Commodores to check in not only with themselves, but also with their friends, classmates and colleagues. All students are encouraged to connect with the many resources available through the Student Care Network when in need. The Center for Student Wellbeing (CSW) is offering tips and resources for students to help them succeed academically this semester.

The center has developed a list of tips for students studying remotely this semester:

  • Set a schedule. It is important you maintain a routine. Depending on how each course handles instructional time, build a work schedule for your week. Do you want to keep it contained to the workday or are evenings a better time for you? Make sure you set aside time to prepare for each class over the course of an “average” week, account for attendance, and give yourself time for review and homework.
  • Discuss your study plan with a support network. Consider sharing your study plan with those around you so that they can help protect your schedule and support your focus.
  • Location, location, location. Think about what conditions are best for you when you are working, taking into consideration noise and distractions. Avoid your bed whenever possible. Come up with three accessible places that fit your optimum location criteria. Rotate through those places over the day and/or week.
  • Study groups still work. Join study groups with your friends and peers. You can still talk through challenging problems and hold each other accountable for work.
  • Check your email. More than ever, university communication will require you to read and respond to relevant emails.
  • Be flexible. This is new for all of us. Be patient with your faculty, colleagues, and yourself as we all figure this out.

The center has many resources to help students succeed academically including workshops, individual academic coaching and an online learning space.

  • Coping in the time of COVID-19 and Learning in the Time of COVID-19 workshops offered earlier this semester remain available for online viewing. These workshops address wellbeing and academic strategies students can use to navigate current challenges.
  • Drop-in Academic Coaching, Wednesdays from 1 to 3 p.m.
    Drop-in Academic Coaching provides a supportive space for undergraduate, graduate and professional students to briefly individually meet with an academic coach. Students have the opportunity to discuss an extensive variety of academic matters, such as learning strategy, time management or writing challenges.
  • Surviving and Thriving with ADHD and Other Executive Function Concerns, select Wednesdays from 4 to 5 p.m., search “ADHD” in AnchorLink for the Zoom information
    This workshop series will focus on strategies for improving work completion and time management and organization, as well as touching on cognitive behavioral and mindfulness interventions. A verified diagnosis of ADHD is not required for this workshop; any interested student is welcome. Email niarhos@vanderbilt.edu or samantha.york@vanderbilt.edu for more information about these workshops.
  • Oct. 21: ADHD and Academic Work
  • Nov. 4: TLCs (therapeutic lifestyle choices)
  • Dec. 2: Prep for Finals
  • Oct. 28 and Nov. 11, 18: Drop-in for accountability, check-in
  • Writers Accountability Group, Nov. 5 and Dec. 3 from 3 to 4 p.m.
    The Writers Accountability Group offers graduate and professional students an opportunity to support each other through the writing process, facilitated by a CSW coach. Monthly meetings are for sharing goals and accountability, not text. Participants should be actively writing and able to commit to regular attendance. Email samantha.york@vanderbilt.edu to register.
  • How to Student: Finals Prep, Monday, Nov. 30, from 2 to 3 p.m.
    “How to Student” workshops are designed to assist students who may be having difficulties with classes, wish to improve grade point averages or who would simply like to enhance study techniques for university work.

Individual Academic Coaching

Through academic coaching, students can polish study skills and learn to manage their time in order to apply those skills effectively. While academic coaching is helpful to students who are experiencing academic difficulties, it is also beneficial to anyone who wishes to enhance their academic effectiveness. Coaches also assist students with:

  • Evidence-based learning strategies and implementation
  • Time management and organizational/study skills
  • Test preparation
  • Writing papers and reports
  • Dissertation block coaching
  • Structure and accountability for long-term independent projects
  • Stress and anxiety due to academic issues

Email healthydores@vanderbilt.edu or call 615-322-0480 to schedule virtual coaching.

Online Learning Space

The center has developed an Online Learning Space for students to access a series of academic, time management and ADHD-related modules. Students can use the modules to evaluate skills, reflect on changes they may want to make, set goals for those changes, and access support along the way.

The modules are self-paced and self-evaluated; students are encouraged to be honest and thoughtful as they go. After each module, students have the opportunity to request follow-up from the CSW. Each module can be completed effectively in 15 minutes, though the time may vary.

To access the CSW Online Learning Space:

  • Log into your Vanderbilt Brightspace account
  • Click on Self Registration and enroll yourself in the Center for Student Wellbeing course
  • Find all modules on left side of the screen
  • Navigate through modules at your own pace

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