Do Homework While At Work

While the term “work study” implies that students who are eligible for specific on-campus positions will be able to do their homework while they are on the clock, that is not the case for all work study jobs.

Associate Director of Financial Aid Operations Deborah Nichols weighed in on the work-study process.

Nichols revealed that only a portion of students are able to become eligible for work-study, while others are able to apply for on-campus jobs through student-hourly.

“A student finds out if they are eligible for work study through their Expected Family Contribution. When students submit their FAFSA, there is a specific range of EFC that will determine if a student qualified for work-study,” Nichols said.

Nichols said that the purpose of a work-study position is not necessarily for students to be able to do their homework while they are on the job, but for their work schedules to be more flexible to work with their academic schedules while also being able to earn a bit of money.

“It is wrong for students to assume that they can do their homework

Cassie Baron / Equinox Staff

while they are at their work-study job. Work-study positions are similar to regular jobs that students would have out on the town with private companies. Through work-study, students are gaining experience in doing a job while balancing their education,” Nichols said.

She continued, “Another important thing about a work-study job is that it is not so much that students can do their homework on the job, but rather that the school is aware that when midterms and finals come up, hours can get changed.”

Nichols added that there is a limited number of work-study jobs that allow students to do their homework.

“It is up to the supervisors of work-study jobs about whether or not students can do their homework. If you can do your job and be able to study too than it is usually okay. If not, students need to accept that they are there to do a job,” Nichols said.

In terms of what students may get out of the work-study experience, Nichols said that she believes students are gaining valuable real-world experience and time management and communication skills that will benefit them in their future careers.

“When I went back to school I got a work-study job in the Financial Aid Office. I eventually got an office position and worked my way up to become the Associate Director of Financial Aid Operations,” Nichols said.

Senior Emily Conrad stated that she has had her work-study job as a facility supervisor at the KSC Recreation Center for four years.

“My responsibilities at my job include filling out memberships for faculty/staff/alumni. I am also in charge of swiping IDs for access to the facility and give out sport equipment and cubby lockers,” Conrad stated.

Conrad stated that the Recreation Center does not allow work-study staff to do their homework while they are on the clock, even when their shifts are four hours long on the weekends.

“At times work can interfere with my school work. I have five classes this semester and usually work in between them during my free time which can cause difficulties in getting assignments done, or studying,” Conrad stated.

Conrad added that the gym did not always have a no-homework policy for work-study staff, “When I started this job freshmen year, the staff was allowed to do homework. When the rules changed, I was shocked and disappointed. Although I was working, it was nice to have the time if there was downtime to be able to study or do some homework.”

With juggling work, academics and a social life, Conrad stated that her time management skills have become stronger throughout her four years at KSC.

“I have to make daily schedules to know when I can fit in school work and making time to actually use the gym and exercise. In terms of having a social life, I have to really plan on staying up late some nights throughout the week to be able to enjoy the weekends,” Conrad stated.

In terms of seeing other work-study students who are able to do their homework while they are working, Conrad stated she finds it frustrating that they can and she cannot.

“I know of a few students who have work study jobs that allow homework while working. I find it frustrating that some campus jobs do not allow homework when we are here to be students first, but then some jobs can be lenient about doing school work,” Conrad stated. Although Conrad is amongst the group of work-study students who cannot do their homework, senior Rebecca Marquis revealed that her job in the President’s Office does.

Marquis said that she has had her work-study job as a Student Assistant in the President’s Office for two years.

“My duties mostly include clerical work. I help clean up and organize around the office, run errands, answer phones and take messages, help out with campus wide mailings, update files, etc.,” Marquis said.

Marquis added that her job is pretty flexible in terms of doing homework while she is at work and that her boss has always told her to bring work with her in case they have a slow day.

“Sometimes I have been pretty stressed out about getting things in on time when I am at work. My work schedule doesn’t interfere with everything as much as it just adds to my day. When I work it just makes my days pretty long going from work in the morning and then straight to classes for the rest of the day,” Marquis said.

Although Marquis is allowed to work on her assignments at her job, she said that it is still necessary to prioritize her time between her course load, work schedule and friends.

“When I am allowed to do homework at work, I have to make sure that all my other tasks at work are done. If something comes up I have to put my homework aside and do my job, which makes something like reading or studying hard to do in the office, but I am lucky enough to be able to bring things into work on,” Marquis said.

She continued, “Academics come first obviously. I always make time for studying and getting homework done before I let myself do anything else with friends or clubs.”When she first started her job at the President’s Office, Marquis said that she did not expect them to allow her to do homework during downtimes.

“Being able to work on homework while I am at work has definitely helped me stay on top of my academics. If I weren’t allowed to work on stuff I think I would struggle a lot more with getting everything done on time and done well. Especially with my senior seminar classes, I have a ton of reading to get done each week so being able to do that while I am at work is a blessing,” Marquis said.

Brogan Wessell can be contacted at Bwessell@kscequinox.com

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In today’s digital world, students have more and more things competing for their attention.

With access to so much entertainment and information, students are often left dividing their focus between more than one task—whether it’s checking social media while studying or trying to complete multiple homework assignments at once.

Multitasking isn’t new. But, with limited attention spans and more distractions, it’s important to make sure students are still learning effectively.

The Multitasking Problem

Many students multitask while working on schoolwork, whether they’re completing a homework assignment or studying for an upcoming test.

A study by Common Sense Media found that half of teens say they often watch TV or use social media while doing homework, and 60% say they text while doing homework.

Of the students who multitask, two-thirds say they don’t think watching TV, texting, or using social media while doing homework makes any difference in the quality of their schoolwork.

But can students actually multitask effectively? Or can it have a negative impact on students’ learning?

50% of teens say they often watch TV or use social media while doing homework [Tweet this]

Why Multitasking Is Bad For Students

Multitasking can have a number of negative effects on learning.

Since students aren’t giving their full attention to their schoolwork, they aren’t as effective at absorbing the information they are studying. And without a solid comprehension of what students are learning, grades can start to slip—up to a half a letter grade.

Longer and more frequent distractions from multitasking can cause school performance to drop even more.

The negative effects of multitasking on students can also include:

  • A weaker grasp on the information being learned
  • Poor retention of the material students have studied
  • Higher levels of stress and frustration
  • Brain drain from tackling too many tasks at once
  • Distractions leading to more time required to complete each task

How Students Can Avoid Multitasking

Help your child break the multitasking habit with these 7 tips:

  1. Turn off the cell phone
  2. Remove the distractions of social media and texts so your child can focus on the task at hand. Have your child power down his or her cell phone or leave it in another room until he or she is done with the study session or homework assignment.

  3. Put away anything that isn’t needed
  4. Pick one task or assignment to work on and put away any books or materials that aren’t needed. This will help keep your child’s attention focused on one thing at a time rather than jumping back and forth between tasks, so he or she can work more effectively.

  5. Don’t study in front of the television
  6. Studying while watching TV can quickly turn into wasted time watching a favourite show rather than actually studying. Schedule a dedicated “homework time” when the TV is turned off and is only turned back on once the night’s assignments are complete.

  7. Stick to a study schedule
  8. After school each day, help your child create a homework schedule to complete assignments and plan study time. Block out time for each assignment he or she needs to work on, and stick to using that time for only that specific task. Use different colours for each task, and create a to-do list so your child can check off a task when it is completed.

  9. Block distracting websites
  10. If your child doesn’t need a computer to complete his or her assignments, turn it off so he or she isn’t tempted by social media or trying to work on multiple assignments at once. If a computer is needed for an assignment, use a browser extension to block distracting websites and keep the number of open tabs to a minimum.

  11. Work in a quiet space
  12. Create a quiet study space where your child can work without distractions. Help your child keep this space clutter-free by only bringing the material needed to work on the task at hand. You can use the study schedule you created to decide what materials and books your child should take to his or her study area.

  13. Use time wisely
  14. The hours after school between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. are usually the most wasted hours of a student’s day. Help your child make the most of this time by encouraging him or her to complete homework as early in the evening as possible. This will help give your child more time for schoolwork, so he or she doesn’t need to multitask to get each assignment done—which means less stress for everyone!

Looking for more homework tips? Check out these tips from the experts on how to study without getting distracted.

Is Multitasking Bad For Students?

Dec 14, 2017•Homework

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