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Two Major Types of Concentration Problems Affecting College Students

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Concentration Problem Affecting College Students

Students in college and university degree programs may or may not suffer from some extent of concentration problems. The issues come from a mixture of problems such as personal distractions, mental disabilities, peer pressures, social norms, introvert/extrovert nature, and other issues that define the learner’s ability to focus in the class and perform as expected.

Although there are many kinds of concentration issues, we will be focusing on two of them.

Focusing at Will

One of the most common problems students encounter in college and university classes is focusing on the time the teacher initiates the lecture. The students end up playing with their pen and paper, looking around the class, constantly checking their watch to see when the class will end, and so on. Focusing at will is mainly the concentration problem that prevails especially at the start of the class. In short, the student finds it difficult to direct his or her mind to concentrate on the lecture that has just started.

Why some students find it difficult to focus their attention on the lecture when for others it’s as easy as simply listening to their favorite track? Although the teacher also has a role to play in asking the students to settle down and get ready for the commencement of the lecture, but students who find it easy have some special techniques to assist themselves.


Focusing at Will HelpsSporting Competition Example

Consider yourself competing in a sporting competition. Visualize yourself at the instance when you are about to take your move. Do you have a plan or ritual to calm yourself in such a situation? Focusing on your prime target, and letting go off all the unwanted distractions surely needs some dedication? Every athlete or sports professional follows a defined strategy of their own to perform certain actions. Examples are kicking the ball, swinging the bat, taking the first punch, etc. This is to direct their attention instantly to something which is about to happen. Obviously, turning back to the lecture starting in the class is not the same as an example from a sports event but the same techniques/concepts can be applied in the classroom as well.


An Example of Sporting CompetitionSelf-talk Approach

Most students use the self-talk approach to focus at will by telling themselves some keywords. For example, saying “focus”, “pay attention”, ”you can do this”, ”this is important”, etc. However, such verbal instances are only one of the other ways to improve your “focus at will” strategy. Some students might say that physical prompt is a more promising option. For example, adjusting yourself to your most comfortable position and taking out your pen and paper. If you do this before the lecture starts, it is enough to get your focus on track.

Putting it simply, anything that helps you to concentrate your mind on the voice of the teacher and the lecture is aiding you in focusing at will.

The approach not only applies to the lectures in the class but also for any subject material on a printed paper, for instance, a writing piece obtained from a dissertation writing specialist in any subject. Given the college and university level assignments are challenging and conceptual enough to get you distracted easily, the students should consider focusing on will outside the classroom too.


How to Sustain the FocusSustaining the Focus

Focusing your concentration on the lecture is important. But keeping the focus sustained throughout the 40- to 45-minute session is another thing, and arguably, more important and difficult. There are a number of students who struggle to contain their concentration regardless of the course complexity or topic length. Some are quite persistent in keeping their focus intact for longer periods. They only distract when they have to do other activities along with listening to the ongoing lecture. For example, doing basic mathematics in the Financial Management class. The difficulty scale of the topic being discussed, student’s interest and motivation level, etc. are the deciding factors that students should consider when evaluating their concentration sustainability.

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