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CICM Super Seven – tips to home based study



Whether you’ve suddenly found yourself out of the classroom and studying from home, or you are using your furlough time to brush up on your studies, then welcome to the world of home-based study!

All study requires effort but studying from home brings its own set of challenges. Here are the CICM Super Seven tips to succeeding in your home-based study:

1. Create a timetable
It doesn’t matter whether you are juggling working from home and home schooling; or you’ve got loads of spare time on your hands, a timetable is still a must if you want to be productive and focused.
Have your end goal in mind (e.g. your assessment date) and work back from there to see how much you need to study each week. Split your syllabus topics across the time you have, remembering to factor in enough time for revision or completion of an assignment.

2. Get yourself organised
The key is to have a routine but not a rut. Designate a study space and keep it free of clutter. Make sure you have all the tools and resources you need – from books and pens to chairs and headsets.
If you’re learning through new software, such as the CICM Virtual Classroom, take a few minutes to do the compatibility checks, and give yourself time to get familiar with the set up and sign-in. Have a set start and end time for your study, too.

3. Engage with your learning
It can be tricky to gain and retain motivation but having a reason to learn will help. Find ways to get absorbed. Work on developing a genuine interest in the topic you’re studying; or focus on the end goal and its reward.
Take a ‘learning styles’ questionnaire to identify your best way to learn – there are plenty on the internet. Auditory learners can supplement textbook reading with a podcast or video; social learners can talk to others about their findings and kinaesthetic learners can develop diagrams to represent their learning. So, whether it’s taking notes or listening to music while you study, find out what works for you, and do it.

4. Accept your situation
Change what you can change and accept what you can’t. If you have a slow internet connection, a home-schooler in the room with you or a relative takes ill, don’t worry, make changes and press on. By adjusting your study to flex around the events you can’t alter, you’re more likely to stick with that study in your new environment. But if you fight against the stuff you can’t change, the study will become too much and you may end up dumping it in the end anyway.

Learning is a great way to keep the brain positive and active during stressful times, but you don’t want the study to add to your stress. Manage your time to match your abilities. If that means cutting your study into smaller pieces with more breaks between, then do it.

5. Embrace new options
Home study presents obstacles but also opens up possibilities you may not have considered before.
What about joining online lessons? CICM’s Virtual Classroom is a popular choice for those who still want the classroom experience from the comfort of their own home. Have you spent some time browsing through the study support resources in CICM’s Knowledge Hub? Have you considered connecting with a mentor or a learning support coach? Take a look outside your ‘comfort zone’ and see what’s on offer.

6. Build your own learning community
If you have a classroom already, or you are studying in a group, stay connected to your classmates. They can be your lifeline. If not, why not reach out and find others who are studying with CICM?
Sharing ideas on your topics, top tips to studying or simply supporting one another emotionally, can be as rewarding as it is beneficial.

7. Reach out to CICM
Your Institute is here to help you reach your true potential. Even during this difficult period, CICM staff remain on hand to help you in your studies.

Whether it’s choosing a study unit, securing coaching help, accessing guidance materials or offering support, we’re here for you. You can find out lots of useful study tips and resources on our website and you can contact us at the head office for more information, on 01780 722909 or by email at