Dear Ivy: How to Juggle Hybrid Classes


Fourth Estate/Billy Ferguson

Dear Ivy,

We are starting a really weird semester that none of us have experienced before. I have a few online classes and a few meeting in person. I have never done an online class before and don’t know what to expect. How do I juggle the work demanded from both the online classes and the in-person classes? 


An Anxious Student

Dear Anxious Student,

Every semester can seem super overwhelming at first, but I know first-hand that the compulsive need to check my email and Blackboard in case I could be missing something causes more anxiety than it should. These are some important tips to remember to start off your semester right. 

One word: organize. It doesn’t matter how you get your things together, whether it’s writing down what you need to do every day on random scraps of paper or creating a detailed calendar of this semester with every single due date. I suggest keeping the syllabi that you have for each course in one place or combining them in one big form. Some apps do this for you, such as CourseHack. If you don’t find some type of system that works for you, you are guaranteed to miss something. 

Organization is key, but going to class is way more important. Showing up to class may seem like common sense, but it can be harder than you think, especially when life becomes hectic. I skipped way more classes than I should have my freshman year. Do not make the same mistake I did! Make sure you show up to your in-person or online classes. For those days when you just can’t go to an in-person class (we all have them), have a friend in the class that you can go to who can catch you up. If your online class is asynchronous, watch those recorded lectures! It may seem like readings are enough but there is a lot of important information packed into those lectures. With asynchronous classes, it can be difficult to keep up with the work each week but it is useful to treat an online class as you would an in-person class so that you don’t miss anything. 

While you are scheduling your schoolwork, do not forget to schedule time for yourself. Give yourself time to exercise, catch up with friends in a safe way or binge a Netflix series. Even though we’re coping with the reality of a global pandemic, school is still just school. If online learning does not work for you, this could be the perfect time to take a gap semester or fewer credits. Your mental and physical well-being should always come first, no matter what academia or society tells you.

– Ivy