Whether you’re studying for a Bachelor’s degree or simply expanding your knowledge base, these tips will help you make the most of your study time. We discover that it’s not always about working harder, but rather about learning how to study more effectively.
1. Break up your study time
Short study sessions allow your brain’s synapses to process information much more efficiently than long study sessions with a lot of information. Consider devoting 30 minutes to your studies before or after work. Make a study schedule, avoid all-nighters, and begin planning and reading early in the study period.
2. Get into the study mode
Make your ideal study space and gather all of the books and items you’ll require. This preparation time also helps to prepare the brain for studying. Limit distractions as well – if you must listen to music, choose melodic music with no lyrics, and, of course, leave your phone alone and avoid social media.
3. Get plenty of rest and exercise
You absorb information better when you’re alert, well-fed, and rested – and even better after you’ve exercised. It’s critical to fuel your brain with nutritious foods like fish, nuts, berries, and yoghurt. It’s also important to stay hydrated and move around in between your 30-minute sessions.
4. Make flashcards
When you write something down after reading or hearing it, your brain stores it better. This means you’ll have to ditch the highlighter and start making flashcards with the essentials. The Leitner System, which uses the principle of spaced repetition and increasing intervals, is a good system to use.
5. Link the information
Making connections when consuming information pays off. While studying, consider how the information you’re reading, watching, or listening to is related to one another. This is what is known as contextual learning. Try to group similar information on a single flashcard.
6. Set study goals
Make a list of your study objectives and cross them off as you complete them. It will not only motivate you and give you a sense of accomplishment, but it will also help you feel in control and reduce any study stress.
7. Put yourself to the test
Practice tests are an excellent way to see where you stand and where you may need to improve. There are some great templates available online to assist with structure. Make a note of anything tricky you come across in your readings and remember to test yourself later for a challenge.
8. Make an effort to teach it
According to studies, people who study material to teach it to others absorb the information more logically than those who study for themselves. According to one study, students who participated in peer learning performed significantly better on a reading test than students who did not, demonstrating the effectiveness of peer tutoring on academic achievement.
9. Read out loud and remember
Read your flashcards and summaries aloud, whether by yourself or with a friend or family member. Close your eyes and try to recall what they say to help cement your main points and arguments.
10. Get rid of the screen
A psychology lecturer at the University of Leicester in England discovered that reading from a screen, rather than a book or piece of paper, makes it more difficult to remember what you’ve read. Print out some of your lecture notes or online articles to give your eyes a break.