Studying is an invaluable experience that everyone must undergo. Whether it is school, university or postgraduate studies, new discoveries await us everywhere.
However, this experience does not always give us pleasant emotions. After all, any learning process implies that you will have to demonstrate your knowledge in the end. And that means such an unpleasant thing as exams.
But what if, despite your efforts, knowledge is hard to give? What to do if it flies in one ear and flies out of the other without leaving any valuable and useful information in the dry residue?
Actually, it’s not that scary. There are many ways to make your studies more effective. Here are 10 simple but very useful tips to help you learn better.
Tips to help you organise your learning process in the right way.
Tip one: Get anything that distracts your attention out of sight.
Do you know why professional billiards or golfers demand silence from the public? Because it’s almost unreal to concentrate when everything around you, including the noise, is distracting your attention!
Exam preparation, like any other learning process, is no different from playing pool – if there are distractions (TV, hanging on the guitar wall, gaming console – in short, everything that comes into your sight), then you are almost certainly distracted.
So, the key point for those who are often distracted is to create an external environment that is as conducive to learning as possible. If you need to move the table to another place – move it! No strength to resist the temptation of standing next to the TV? Cover it with something or carry it over!
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Perhaps someone will need to make order on their desk, taking a minimalist approach. Otherwise, attention is distracted not only lying around the phone, but also accidentally found a book on the subject.
You may be impressed by another environment – when your desk is full of papers, books… It’s not necessarily that you need silence – some people work perfectly well with, say, classical music. The key to success is to make you feel comfortable!
Tip two: Carefully choose a place to study.
Approximately the same approach should be taken to the choice of a place to study. It is clear that students living in the dormitory have little choice. But if you personally have a choice, then, for example, the bedroom is not the best place to sit down for books.
In general, given the plethora of distractions, some of which have been listed above, even your home is not always the right place to study productively. And if you’re always distracted by home distractions…
The most obvious place to study that you can advise is, of course, the library. However, it is also not always a quiet place (especially on the eve of exams). It turns out that finding a comfortable place to study – it is not so easy task!
In fact, you just need to consider all options. If the weather is favorable, you can get out into the park, find a free-standing bench, away from the noisy kids, where you can chew granite science. Or, alternatively, you can stop at a quiet cafe.
It is known that the soft hum, gathered from different voices (let’s call it “audience hum”), is able to stimulate students to study. It is such a rumble can stand in a cafe. Maybe for you it is not the best option. Well, look for yours, but do not forget that study and bed – are incompatible.
Tip three: Highlight the material in which you “swim”
It’s not for nothing that they say students have fun from session to session. The fun ends and the most stressful time for the vast majority of students comes – the time to test their knowledge, i.e. to pass exams.
It is during these periods that many students are acutely short of time. Typically, this leads to the fact that the exam is not able to prepare absolutely all the questions. However, not all students use the time before the session rationally.
In fact, there is one secret that even in the last days before the session will allow students to prepare for the exam more efficiently. The fact is that, with a large volume of material, many students barely have enough time to read it a couple of times.
This is not enough, especially when it comes to difficult moments. It is recommended that you write a summary of each ticket on paper before reading it again. It may be worth breaking down the content of some questions and summarizing it in the same way.
When re-reading it, you should not focus on the material you know well. Pay attention to those points that you have not been able to summarize on paper, and spend more time rereading them.
The secrets of good learning
Tip four: Learn how to plan
Planning is what teachers tell us all the time, but it is something that is rarely taught. And even before that – they themselves are trying to follow the curriculum, which does not actually include the need to teach us to learn!
That is why you have to learn to plan for yourself – this is a very necessary skill that will be useful not only in further study, but also at any job, and just in your daily life.
Consciously postponing the most complex cases, you are well aware that you are wasting your time irrationally. Start by putting together a whole list of cases within the curriculum for one week.
This simple activity, while not particularly useful (at first glance), will actually help you get rid of unnecessary junk in the form of a to-do list. In addition, you will be able to visually assess the entire workload. Don’t forget to set the due dates!
Then you should highlight the most complex and time-consuming tasks and tasks. When you do this, spread out your pressing concerns for each day of the week, given your workload on that particular day.
Tip five: Study in a group with other students.
Group work is a very useful and productive practice for any student. Of course, effectiveness can sometimes depend on what you are working on. Perhaps if you are studying the development of painting during the Renaissance, you will need a bottle of wine and privacy.
However, if your field of study is in the applied sciences (medicine, mathematics, construction, for example), then studying the material in a group, solving problems and finding the right answers together can be very effective.
This effectiveness is due to the fact that the process of checking the material becomes more dynamic and attractive. There is an opportunity to ask questions, discuss difficult points in the group, and formulate answers more correctly.
Of course, technically you are also able to do the amount of work you face. However, in this case, it increases the probability of not paying attention to your weaknesses, not feeling those moments in which you swim.
There is also such a negative point as the monotony of the process of independent study of the material. If you want to avoid this, then group work is what you need. Change the format of the study and maybe you will remember the material better.
Tip six: Take regular breaks
The painstaking work on the material is yielding obvious results. However, the proximity of exams against the background of a number of current problems puts pressure on students, forcing many of them to literally shut themselves off from the outside world with an iron curtain.
Some are overly fanatic about this period – closing for a few days in their room, taking short breaks just to take a nap, visit the toilet or go to the kitchen for a sandwich. Others refuse to sleep at all.
This is not the right tactic! Breaks on a regular basis are mandatory. After all, not without reason, a lot of research has been carried out, which proved that if you regularly give your brain time to rest, the efficiency of absorption of the material will increase significantly.
You will be able to assimilate more material and do it faster; your abilities will have a motivational effect on you, which will only increase your productivity. Of course, it is not a question of you working out for 15 minutes and then spending three hours to revise several series of “Game of Thrones”.
But to work with a textbook for two hours, and then interrupt to watch one series of “The Interns” or some other light and short comedy – that’s it. This approach gives rest to the prefrontal cortex and allows you not to stop at difficult moments.
How good is learning? Tips from .
Tip seven: Feed your brain, not your stomach.
The times of deficit are long gone. This means that there is no need to eat one tea, saving on the most necessary – on those resources that allow you not just to exist, but to work effectively by assimilating the material.
We’re talking about a full meal. Of course, when you have taken inspiration, it is difficult to interrupt even to make yourself a regular sandwich or order a pizza. At this point, we ignore the indignation of our stomachs.
However, it is not worth doing this, because in the end, this unconsciousness affects not only the stomach, but also your brain, which means that your productivity in learning is reduced. Don’t invent the bike: Science has long recognized the inextricable link between diet and cognitive functioning of the brain.
The brain needs food no less (or even more!) than the stomach. And it is not worth trying to fool him with regular sausage and cheese sandwiches, burgers from a nearby diner, or chocolate bars.
During the period of active learning, when our brain is working, which is called the limit, it needs special food! That’s why you need to have fruit, vegetables and nuts in your diet – that’s at least!
Tip eight: Don’t let yourself dry out!
This famous slogan of the beginning of zero perfectly expresses the idea of the eighth council, which will allow you to learn more effectively. The right diet is good, but it’s not enough for your brain to work at its full potential.
If you don’t drink enough water, your brain’s ability to do so will be significantly reduced. Plenty of water is not the notorious eight glasses a day that you are trumpeting about on every corner.
In fact, it is essential that you always have a bottle of clean drinking water on hand. Keep it bright and eye-catching – it’s one of the items on your table that is worth being distracted from time to time.
Do not wait until you feel a strong thirst. Once your lips are a little dry, take a sip of water; if you go to the toilet and notice the dark colour of your urine, drink water. And that’s two late signs of dehydration!
Try also to avoid the temptation to drink coffee or caffeine-containing drinks all the time. All energies are also a deadly option! High levels of sugar and caffeine increase blood pressure, which ultimately reduces your productivity (not to mention harm your health!).
Tip nine: Use effective material memory techniques.
Monotony and the need for constant study is something that can negate the effectiveness of any learning process. But are these rules of assimilation, which many believe to be the only true, so unshakeable?
In fact, it is far from sad and desperate. The simplest, but also the most effective way is not just to read out the material, but to transfer at least part of it on paper, sometimes using associative images.
For example, it is possible to bind some postulates and formulas to certain symbols or words. At the same time there is a development of mnemonic memory, the mnemonic technique is polished, which allows you to easily remember much more material in a shorter time.
Of course, this approach will require more time from you, but your goal is not to shorten training time but to use it more productively. One of such tricks is writing cheat sheets. No need to copy, no need to print – you need to rewrite the material with your own hand. Then it’s a good idea.
Another useful secret is to repeat the material you learn in your own words. Zubrezka, maybe, and give you a chance to pass the exam or offset. However, the benefit of thoughtless memorization will be little, as this knowledge quickly disappears.
Tip 10: Give yourself a proper installation.
A lot has been said about the benefits of positive thinking in any case. And the learning process is one of those activities that requires you to be in the right mood. You just have to convince yourself that you are morally prepared to master the material of any complexity.
When there is a need to sit down for a textbook to learn another difficult chapter, do not act as if you were waiting for Calvary! Of course, sometimes it is very difficult to give your brain the necessary setting.
If you feel a decline in strength, there is little chance that you will be able to assimilate material through strength. However, it is worth learning how to manage your mood and state of mind. Cut off bad thoughts and astonishing moods. Say to yourself: “I will learn this material and I will definitely pass the exam!”.
Be inspired by your own victories and do not dwell on your failures, for the latter are temporary problems. You are able to overcome any difficulties, and even more so to learn some material!
Neither should you compare yourself with other, more successful students, tuning in to the idea that “you can never do this. Throw your emotions away, follow all the above rules, and the time when you succeed will not be long in coming!