Love it or hate it, studying is an integral part of life at Uni, TAFE and school, and the simple fact is if you want better grades then you need to master effective study habits.
The trick is to study smarter not harder and with a few simple steps you’ll be able to master new habits that will have you studying more effectively in no time.
Check out our 5 top tips for making the most out of your study time.
1. Your study environment it super important
Your study space is dependent on you, as you will feel most comfortable and ultimately, will be more productive, if you choose an environment suited to you. Some people will feel more productive if they have zero distractions, little noise and basically a space for little distraction but the book you have sitting in front of you. Others, will prefer an environment with noise, like a busy café, a bus or campus study rooms, as the environment fosters a space for you to feel more comfortable knowing you have support around you. Whatever it is, find a space that is exactly the way you like it!
2. Your attitude is everything
Start with a new approach to how you view study, instead of seeing it as something you HAVE to do, try viewing study as a new opportunity to learn more about the things you love about your class or course. Your mindset is such a powerful tool when used for the greater good (eg. study) so ensure you are thinking positively about the task at hand and also your ability to get it done. Another tip is to avoid ‘Absolute Thinking’ which are those annoying little negative things that can get in your head and throw out your whole day. Instead of thinking ‘I’m going to mess this up, I always mess things up’ try to think positive thoughts like ‘I didn’t do so well at this last time, what can I do to improve this time’.
3. Why not try some memory games?
Memory games can be a great way to remember pieces of information using a simple association of common words. Try rhyming, rapping or making little songs that will remind you and trigger your memory for the task at hand. The key is to make sure the memory device you are going with is easy to remember, these don’t work for everyone though so if this isn’t your thing, then take the time to find out what is.
4. Keep your phone away and avoid using a laptop if you get easily distracted
One minute you are studying the law of physics and the next minute you are on your ex boyfriends, sister’s new husbands Facebook page. Yup, there’s nothing to be embarrassed about, we’ve all been there. So bring everything you need and nothing you don’t. Tur your phone off or take the vibrate off so when it’s on silent you can’t hear the gentle hums of a text or email. Try a good old pen and paper instead of your laptop if you know you are going to get distracted easily. There is no point playing games or watching YouTube clips during your study time, it’s just a distraction you don’t need. This time is for concentrating and soaking up as much information as you can, so use the time wisely.
5. Your course syllabus is your new best friend – read it
The course syllabus will give you a good indication of the topics you’ll need to spend the most time on so don’t waste hours researching a topic that weighs 5% vs a topic that weighs 30%. Set yourself time limits for each task and when the time you have delegated runs out, move on to the next task at hand. This strategy will help to ease the stress of completing your tasks come exam time. It’s all about practice and good habits now.
Sure juggling life, work and study can seem like an almost impossible task, but if you take control of your time and get organised, it’ll be well worth it in the end. Give yourself the breathing space and tools you need to make the most out of your study time. Your future self will thank you.
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