How to create the best study environment

Create the best home environment for your study

When you’re learning online, it’s important to have an effective study space customised for your learning style, ergonomics, personal preferences and peak productivity. So many factors contribute to creating the best study environment for you:

  • Lighting
  • Sounds and scents
  • Ergonomic workspace positioning 
  • Greenery 
  • Reliable WiFi 
  • Physical comfort and movement
  • Studying preferences
  • Interruptions 
  • Phase of life

Let’s look at how to create a study environment that will set you up for success.

Where do I set up my study space? 

Setting up a study space starts with designating a dedicated workspace – ideally a room with a door. 

If you live with other people – especially kids – make sure they understand that you need time to study. Choose a place in the house to study that is quiet with low foot traffic and a door you can close (think spare bedroom or office rather than kitchen or lounge room). But if you’re short on space, consider setting up in a corner of your bedroom. Or, if your home is simply too chaotic, consider booking a pod or desk at your local library for your study sessions.

Wherever you choose, use this space to create a serene environment that will help frame your mind while you study.

Ultimate Guide to Studying from Home


How to remove distractions from your study environment 

Next, you need to remove the distractions blocking you from studying effectively in the first place. These distractions can be physical, digital or mental. Here are some distraction-busting solutions: 

  • Hang a do not disturb sign on your door handle and close the door.
  • Turn your phone off and pop it in your bedside drawers, car’s glove box, or a high shelf. The important thing is to get it out of sight and earshot. Worried about missing something urgent? You can customise do not disturb mode on your phone to only allow calls from people in your favourites or send an auto-reply text before you lock away your phone. 
  • Download an app or browser extension like Freedom, BlockSite or Forest to block distracting apps and websites during specific study hours.
  • Always give your desk a two-minute tidy after a study session, so you don’t get distracted by clutter or have an excuse to get sucked into ‘a quick clean’. 
  • If you have kids, hand them off to your partner or sitter while you’re studying or organise for them to hang out at a friend’s house. If that’s not possible, give them unlimited screen time between the time your door closes and re-opens provided they don’t bother you for non-emergencies. You may find that they magically transform into quiet, courteous housemates for an hour.

How to make your study space conducive to learning

Your environment should be set up to support your study. Natural light, greenery, quiet, and lack of clutter and distractions will help you work optimally. For example, bright fluorescent lighting may be distracting and harsh on your eyes. Soft, natural lighting is more neutral and easier on your eyes, making it easier to focus. 

Here are more ideas to ensure a calm, organised study space: 

  • Keep your individualised learning plan or study planner in a prominent place on your desk so you can keep yourself on track and take things one task at a time.
  • Add greenery and plants to the room to decrease stress and increase productivity and air quality. 
  • Clear your desktop and upload a minimalist background to centre your mind. 
  • Keep a calendar for due dates, assessments and coaching calls. 
  • Consider study space features that may make online easier – pens, notepads, sticky notes, reference books, shelves or drawers. 
  • Set the tone by hanging up inspiring artwork and lighting a candle or diffuser. 
  • Open the blinds and windows to let in plenty of natural light and fresh air. 
  • Hang diagrams or images related to your study above your desk.
  • Stay organised with a dedicated folder for coursework with sub-folders for individual units.

How To Use A Study Planner


How to incorporate ergonomics in your environment 

Your study space must be set up to be used simply and safely. An ergonomic environment reduces injuries and strains and should meet work health and safety laws. Here are some things to check: 

Desk and chair 

  • Your desk should be flat and big enough to fit everything you need. 
  • You should have an adjustable desk chair that supports your back and allows you to have your elbows level to the height of your desk. 
  • Your shoulders and forearms should feel relaxed while you’re working. 
  • Position your feet flat on the floor or use a footrest. 


  • You should have two computer screens – your laptop and a monitor. 
  • Position these screens next to one another with the seam between them directly in front of you so that you can work off both screens equally. 
  • The top of your screens should be at eye level or just below. If you need to arch your neck, the screen is too high. If you need to dip your chin, the screen is too low. You can get a laptop riser or use a sturdy box to prop your laptop to the right height. You should just be able to touch the screens with your fingertips, making the distance one arm’s length away. 

Keyboard and mouse

  • It’s a good idea to use a separate keyboard and mouse rather than your laptop’s built-in keyboard and trackpad. 
  • Your keyboard and mouse should be level with one another, directly in front of you. 
  • They should also be positioned 10–15 cm from the edge of your desk (about the length from the top of your palm to the tips of your fingers). This will make sure you have good wrist and forearm support. 
  • Keep your arms close to your body when typing or using your mouse to avoid neck and shoulder strain. 


Always make sure that your equipment is safe and well-maintained. That means: 

  • Cords and plugs aren’t damaged and power points aren’t overloaded. 
  • Cords are tucked out of the way and there are no tripping or electrical hazards. 
  • You can get to your workstation safely and easily. 

How to succeed at online learning

Ultimately, your study environment needs to suit you as an individual. If you need background noise, play instrumental music or nature sounds. If you like more light, add lamps to your space. If you like to eat while you study, have a selection of healthy and tasty snacks so you aren’t tempted to raid the kitchen mid-study. Remember that you want your study environment to be comfortable, quiet, clean and organised to facilitate a productive space.

If you’re struggling to digest all of our recommendations or not sure how you measure up, go to for personalised recommendations.

Setting yourself up for study success can be a challenge. However, if you curate the best environment for yourself, you can accomplish your tasks efficiently and finish your coursework faster, while enjoying the experience too.


Study Planner Template and Task Delegator Template

Plan your study week, and successfully prioritise your tasks with our templates!

Download the PDF below, and select print.

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