You may be putting in hours of studying, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re digesting the material. Learning to study more effectively will mean shorter and more efficient study sessions, and eventually, better grades!
1- Perform a resource reconnaissance.
Sit down and make a list of what you think will be on an exam or quiz. Next, write down all the resources you have at your disposal to help you learn the information, such as taking a practice exam or joining a study group.
If you are studying for an exam, look back on the previous quizzes. Some of that information is bound to come up again.
Quizzes are smaller than exams, and typically only cover information from the current section or chapter.
If you can’t find a practice exam or study group, create your own!
2- Create a study plan.
Once you figure out what you need to study and how you will take advantage of the resources at your disposal, sit down and make a study schedule. Block out periods of time within your schedule to dedicate to studying and stick to the plan.
- You can change your study schedule slightly, but try not to change it too much!
- Make sure you give yourself more time than you think you need, specially if it is a subject that you struggle with.
3- Get in a positive mindset.
You need to be in as positive a mindset as possible when you sit down to study. If you are emotionally distracted, you will be less effective at learning and retaining information. Try to think positively while studying, and don’t compare yourself to others.
- Try saying something positive to yourself before you being studying, like, “I am going to ace this exam!”
- If you find yourself thinking negative thoughts like, “I’m going to fail that quiz,” stop the thought in its tracks. Replace it with a positive thought, like, “I’m going to master this material and succeed!”
4- Find a quiet study spot with minimal distractions.
Where you study affects how effective your study sessions are. If you are distracted by television, the Internet, or your roommate, you won’t study as effectively as you would in a quiet place with fewer distractions.
- Take advantage of the library. Find a cozy spot with light foot traffic and start studying.
- Spend the afternoon studying in a quiet coffee shop.
- Study when your roommate is at work or class, and you have the place to yourself.