Zoomed Out? Tips and Tools to Combat Zoom Fatigue (S2, WK6)

Dear Students

Hopefully you got some time away from the screens last week and enjoyed that wonderful feeling of Spring in the air! We are now in Week 6 and you need to pace yourselves to last the course of the next few weeks, so we thought we'd share some great resources to help you balance all of the zooming in and out! Take a look and see what might work for you - we all have different ways of making this online world work for us, but there are some great new tools which will make a difference we think!

Hope you are all well! 

Event                                                   Date                Time                   Link

Pathways to Success (Wk 3)                     23/02/21          17:00 - 18:00             Click here
'Building Confidence & Resilience' 

Mindfulness: Self Care & Gratitude          23/02/21          13:00 - 14:00             Click here      
- Core resources to Resilience S4

Afternoon Mass from the Inter                  23/02/21          13:00 - 13:30         Live Steam here
Faith centre (live stream) 

Assignment Writing Workshop                 24/02/21          17:00 - 18:00             Click here

International Relations & Politics -           24/02/21          15:00 - 16:00           Register here
Careers Showcase Series: S3

Free Yoga Classes - S2 Series                  24/02/21          12:05 - 12:55           Register here
(organised by the CLC & SLC)

Interview Skills Workshop                         25/02/21          13:00 - 13:50           Register here

Effective Learning Skills Wk 1                   25/02/21          13:00 - 14:00             Click here

Pathways to Success (Wk 3)                      25/02/21          13:00 - 14:00             Click here
'Building Confidence & Resilience' 

For details on upcoming online events, check out the My DCU Events Calendar on Loop!
Feeling a bit zoomed out? Watch the short video below to get research based tips on how to reduce Zoom fatigue while studying or working from home. 
Live Transcript is a handy Zoom function which makes sessions more accessible for users. It can support your comprehension and can also help to reduce zoom fatigue.

This short guide outlines how you can use the Live Transcript function - it covers:
  1. How to turn on closed captions
  2. How to increase caption text size
  3. How to search a transcript 
  4. How to download a transcript
For more wellbeing and digital skills resources visit DEVELOP on Loop. 
DCU have just launced a new app which aims to improve online learning.

The app was developed in response to student feedback on their experiences of online learning during the pandemic - in particular the challenge to stay attentive during online sessions. It tailors session recordings so that each student gets a video summary that is personalised to their individual attention levels.

Find out more about Help-Me-Watch.
After a day of online learning, recharge by doing something fun offline! Some ideas....
REMINDER! SU Election nominations close Wednesday at 11am - see details here.
Online Learning - What Helps Me Stay Focused 
Rachel is a Masters student at DCU. She gave us the student perspective on Zoom fatigue and shared some habits that have helped her to stay focused and energised on Zoom heavy days. Here's what she had to say...
For undergraduate and postgrad students alike, Zoom has changed our university experience in both positive ways (later wake-up times to catch morning lectures, making a strong brew before the next class) and sometimes negative ways (missing casual interactions with our classmates, overcoming the awkwardness of unmuting and asking questions on call). 
On top of this, some of us have found it difficult to concentrate and remain productive while our virtual lecture begs for our attention. During those middle-of-the-week Zoom class marathons we try our best to focus on absorbing information but it’s also easier than ever to get distracted by our phones, social media, cute pets or deciding which snacks we need for study period.
So here are 3 things that I do to help myself to focus during Zoom calls.

1. Placing my phone in the dog’s kennel…

I joke of course but it has been shown that keeping distractors nearby (especially those that require us to multitask) decreases our productivity by nearly 40%. Once I started putting my phone away during lectures, I felt more focused on the content I was listening to and could remember a lot more of what was being said.

2. Doing the Just Dance Rasputin video in my room (seriously!) 

On a day that I was feeling down and unfocused after 3 hours of back-to-back Zoom calls, my sister asked if I wanted to join her for some Just Dance. I really wish I had integrated those dance exercises sooner because they can be done during short Zoom call breaks, they’re really enjoyable and they are completely bedroom friendly! Best of all I entered my next lecture feeling energised and a lot happier. If you’re not one who chooses to exercise before class, I promise that this will get you moving! (Bonus tip: Get a sibling or housemate to do it with you - it makes it all the more entertaining and benefits more people!)

3. Turning the Zoom meeting function to main speaker mode

It’s proven that seeing ourselves on camera creates an extra level of self-awareness and this makes us feel like we need to perform better than if we were in a lecture hall! So I decided to change my Zoom settings to only viewing my lecturer speak and felt instantly more at ease. I was less distracted by different backgrounds, less worried about comparing my performance and felt more energised once class was done!

Having seen the effect that these small changes have had on my Zoom university experience, I highly recommend other students to try even one of them. Then see the changes it can bring to your overall mood and concentration during your classes!
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