Creating a good environment for completing online learning

In this post find tips and tricks for creating a productive working environment, so you can stick with your online learning.

Learning online requires determination: there’s no teacher keeping an eye on you and distractions just a click away. Your learning is entirely in your hands: it’s up to you to keep going. So how do you?

A good starting point is creating a pleasant environment to learn in. Here are a few recommendations that have helped the FutureLearn team with their  own online learning.

1. Make space

Stacks of paper and books might look impressive, but a sudden book avalanche is a distraction at best and a hazard at worst. Make sure you have plenty of room for the device you’re learning on and an area to take notes if required. Clear your immediate working area of clutter and distractions and you should be able to improve your focus.

2. Get the temperature right

The next distraction to remove is temperature. Make sure you’re not too hot or cold. If you find yourself shivering (or sweating) over your computer at home try visiting a local library or cafe, their temperature is usually constant.

3. Adjust the lights

Like temperature, how much light you want when studying can sometimes come down to personal preference: maybe you like a room as full of natural light as possible, or maybe you prefer it cosy and dark. Either way make sure you’re able to clearly see your screen and there’s not too much glare, else you might end up with eye strain.

4. Get comfortable

If you’re using a computer for a long period of time make sure your computer is positioned appropriately and that you’re sitting appropriately. How do you do that? Read more on the NHS to find out. If you’re in an uncomfortable seat or position you’re not going to be able to focus on your studies, so try and make yourself as comfortable as possible (without falling asleep).

5. Turn up (or down) the volume

When you’re doing an online course you’re most likely going to have videos to watch, so music isn’t always useful. But if you’ve got reading to do, an assignment to write, or notes to organise it might spur you on. Work out if music helps you, and then investigate if certain genres of music are better than others. Sometimes lyrics can be distracting so try searching for lyric-free playlists (we like the Peaceful Piano and Music for Concentration playlists on Spotify).

6. Learn what works for you

Lastly, and most importantly, you need to learn what works for you. Maybe you learn best amongst clutter in the heat of the summer sun. Maybe you learn exceptionally well listening to 90s club anthems. Treat our advice as a starting point and try adjusting your environment, eventually you should find something that works for you.

Got any advice for creating a good learning environment? Tell us in the comments.

Category Learning

Comments (17)


  • Marnin

    Very helpful. Thank you for your support.

  • Ravinder kumar

    Well, these tips are really helpful for each learners. hopfully I wil try to follow these tips with my own.

  • Dr Mukund lal

    Above article revealed in regard of online learning.point out and illustrated the online learning determinant which is absolutely right for online learning.determinant for online learning like surrounding envoronment and temperatue for online learner should be very accurate. There is not maximum books on your table that you concern but you learn what material you right environment and temperature can bring you a good online learner.

  • Chukwu Godwin

    These tips are quite helpful.

  • sandra

    Usefull, indeed.

  • FM

    Great tips!

  • Drake Frost

    Interesting article. Online learning is now gaining a lot of popularity. Because of the opportunity to get an education or master the necessary skills anywhere in the world, where there is an Internet. But the preparation of the workplace will not be enough. For quality online learning, self-organization is important. Since, unlike traditional training, there is no strict control or requirements for students in online learning. The subject or skills must be interesting to you. Since lack of control and no interest in a subject can lead to the student’s refusal to study. In addition, you need to choose a quiet place, where you can focus. It is also important to use only quality resources. When I needed to study the process of writing an essay I used such sites –,

  • Jana

    I like this kind of advice, even if just to realise again and again. One knows it but.. 🙂
    Thank you!

  • Scarlet Klenn

    Thanks for the advice. Still, what are your thoughts on the online learning platforms?
    And should we trust an organization that they are a non profiting from student data just because they are a non-profit? According to the ace writing helper data, the College Board makes millions from selling student data. And now schools/states are requiring taking the SAT (or ACT for that matter) to graduate. Who’s really benefiting from this? Not the students. It’s the same thing with these initiatives – Their mission may be to improve education, but they are not going to ignore the value of the data they can collect and profit from. Oh – and what a coincidence that CZI entered into a partnership with the College Board.

    • Asma

      But I’m sure the students are benefitted too…. I am very happy with the online courses provided by such companies.. I have kids and cant leave them to attend college, and don’t even have enough funds … so this is amazing for me… works out well… and enlightens my mind.. instead of just watching the same dramas again and again on TV.

  • Mahmoud Khattab

    Good review

  • mohamed

    It is very help full for any kind of learning and reading.

  • Baban Sabale

    It is very helpful to online learner.

  • Amany Shaaban

    Thank you very much

  • Sohila Tokhi Swatiwal

    Thank you so much Lily and Learn future team,I’ll read and learn in my free time.

  • Ganeshgondhale


  • Mavjuda

    Break time for snacks