‘How to Study’ is one of those questions that has no fixed answer, meaning how you study is predicated by ‘what you are studying’, ‘when you are studying’ and ‘what you are studying for…’.
Expanding further, how you study will depend not only the subject of your focus but whether or not you are studying for an exam and how long you have left.
Hence the strategies you employ for learning will differ according to subject type, exam date and your grade target.
Study is about transferring large quantities of information from source into your head, processing that information in such a way so that it remains stored in your memory, ready for application as and when needed — more specifically for exams.
The real challenge in studying for most students is to manage large quantities of diverse subject matter in the shortest time possible, in an efficient and effective way that facilitates understanding to a level of top quality performance.
This simply means that study so that you can meet the highest, most difficult, exam challenge.
Settling down to a regular habit of effective study is not easy.
It requires discipline and conscious effort, but once you succeed in taking those initial steps, regular quality study will become second nature.
What matters is that you learn to manage your time by prioritizing study, making timetables and schedules of work, suited to your level of work and the nature of what you are studying.
General rules of thumb that are expanded on in other Top Grade Student articles include:
- Studying in short chunks — preferably of 20-40 minute duration
- Studying in a suitable environment free from distraction, with suitable lighting, furnishing and study space
- Exercise before, during and after study that includes getting some fresh air, stretching, going for walks for short intervals
- Eating small meals when you feel hungry, rich in vitamins
- Drinking water, but as and when needed
- Dissipating your worries by studying during either early hours, when you can’t do much except study — or listing your concerns on paper
- Converting any notes into your words
- Assigning specific folders and exercise books to each topic
- Focusing on the most demanding and challenging concepts work first
- Using a variety of tools to learn, memorize and represent the information you learn that is suited to your learning style and is yet broad based in using visual, auditory and kin aesthetic tools
- Re-enforcing what you learn through interaction with other students
- Associating what you learn with what you know already
- Regular monitoring and measurement of what you learn through tests and mock examinations
Further Help is available in our Education Newsletter (Top Grade Student box on right).
Detailed Help coming soon. Keep an eye on this space.
Comments or questions are welcome.