Do you have good study habits? Like many things in life, the way we study can be improved greatly. These 8 study tips you’re probably not using will help you to study more efficiently.
8 Study Tips You’re Probably Not Using
Turn off your phone! (Or at least turn it on airplane mode.)
If you must use your computer, do not have notifications on while you’re working. These are distracting.
#2: Set your schedule by semester, month, week, and day
Look at your syllabus for each class. Write your final exams on your calendar. Then write down your midterms. If you know the dates of presentations, quizzes, and essay deadlines, write those as well. Then look at your expected reading for each week. Organize your schedule so that you read everything before class, not after. Be sure to keep the week before midterms and finals free so that you can study a lot but still have time for rest.
#3: Set a timer
How long will you study? Set a timer and a goal. When the clock is ticking, it is easier for most people to stay focused.
#4: Schedule your breaks
Once the timer is done, take a break! Get a coffee, take a walk, eat a snack, check your phone, call your mom, take a selfie . . . do something fun before getting back to studying. These little breaks make a big difference!
#5: Visit professors during office hours
While you’re making your schedule and looking at each class syllabus, also look at each professor’s office hours. Be sure that you have time one to two weeks before your exam or midterm to visit your professor, just in case you have any questions. Write this on your schedule like it’s a class you will attend, and use this time to speak with your professor, get to know him/her, and ask questions. It is time well spent!
#6: Arrive to study groups already prepared
Some consider study groups to be a waste of time. (They can be, when the people in the study group are not serious.) Try your best to add something to your study group: arrive on time, and be prepared with many questions for your classmates. This will help keep everyone focused.
#7: Write notes by hand, not computer
Researchers have proven that students actually remember and understand more when they write notes by hand (rather than typing). Try to write notes by hand during class. When you are studying, type these handwritten notes. This is actually a form of studying!
When you are learning English, spelling is always a concern. After typing the notes, use spell check to see if you spelled everything correctly. Some technical words (and the names of some people) will be marked as “incorrect,” but all of the other words should be correct.
#8: Find outside resources
You’re going to class, you’re taking notes, you’re reading all of the assigned reading, you’re going to study groups and office hours . . . what more can you do?
There actually is more.
Try to go above and beyond* what is required of you. What more can you learn about this subject? Are there videos on YouTube? Websites dedicated to the subject? Apps to help you learn more? When you need a break from studying, take this time to use the internet to research what other resources are available for you. Take advantage of them!
*Go above and beyond: an expression meaning “to do more than what is expected”