- Attend every class.
Students who attend school regularly also feel more connected to their community, get better grades, and develop healthy life habits, setting them up for a strong future.
- Ask questions.
Talking to your professor and asking questions to clarify your understanding of a subject helps you to be more engaged with the material. To ask a question, you have to formulate it first, and that formulation is an integral part of the process of gaining a better understanding of a given subject.
- Schedule your study time.
Scheduling your study time, at the same time each day when possible, will help you make studying a habit and prevent you from a midnight cram session the day before a big test.
- Avoid distractions.
Create a dedicated space and use laptops and smartphones wisely. When studying or working create a quiet space. Temporarily un-friend your phone and if you can, disable your internet.
- Start with the most difficult subject.
Behavioral scientists have discovered that, psychologically, we prefer experiences that improve over time. By starting with the more painful parts of the study experience, you will effectively create an enjoyable experience.
- Review your notes.
By looking over your notes as soon as possible after class, your memory will still be fresh and you can fill in any gaps that you may have missed and identify additional questions you may have for your professor.
- Take care of yourself.
Eat healthy snacks that will fuel your brain such as trail mix, apples or avocado toast and ensure you get enough sleep, especially the night before an exam.
- Use good lighting.
Proper lighting can help to keep you energized, reduce strain on your eyes and increase your overall productivity. If your desk is in a corner or poorly lit area, consider getting a desk lamp to improve the lighting conditions.
- Take regular short breaks.
Study breaks every 50 to 90 minutes help to keep you from getting bored and allows you to focus better during your study session. Breaks also give our brains a chance to process the new information it has received helping you to retain more from your studying.
- Use multiple learning methods.
The more regions of the brain that store information on a subject, the more interconnection and memory trigger points that are created. So, by using more than one learning method, you are providing your brain with more opportunities to retain the new material being studied. Some methods you may consider are podcasts and recorded lectures, flashcards, mind maps and diagrams, practice exercises, teaching someone about the subject, or post-study session write everything you remember on a blank piece of paper to identify areas that need more attention.
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