There are some students who often score between A and the perfect A+ in tests and examinations yet they rarely spend a lot of time reading. You have encountered these students, and you are still intrigued by their seemingly natural studying talents. You might also desire to become like them, but you have not figured out their secrets. What is their secret? You are equally talented, but you have been using the wrong study techniques. Maybe you are used to cramming or memorizing large chunks of information that overwhelm your retention ability. You can also be scared every time you discover that the amount of notes you are supposed to peruse add up to a book. You might convince yourself that putting in more hours would do the trick, but just reflect on the limited time you have in your academic schedule. You have to divide your time between academics and extra-curricular activities. Hold your breath, because today you might discover a study technique that will work for you. What then are the secrets to studying smarter?
Rather than writing down everything the lecturer says, jot down the most important key points in a logical manner. Having some whitespace allows you to elaborate on the points later during your study session. Put question marks for those points that are unclear so that you can research them later.
Each day you learn something new. Create a to-do-list that categorizes your tasks according to their degree of importance and difficulty. You should have a list of books or materials that need to be read at least twice a day. You should have a mind map of the ideas you want to grasp, the needed topics, and a timeline for understanding different concepts. Similarly, you should have a list of questions or exercises that you should do after reading.
You are not obliged to read every text in a book or an article. Train yourself to scan the reading material for the overview. Scanning abstracts, introductions, summaries, chapter headings, “chapter aims and objectives,” and key points gives you an idea about the main concept. Try creating your own questions for the points that are difficult to comprehend. Most textbooks have questions at the back of each chapter. Use them as a guide to understand the topics covered in the textbook. Asking questions also leads to a better memory and the ability to connect abstract ideas.
Have a regular study schedule
Avoid long study hours in favor of shorter study sessions. The time limit trains you to utilize your time correctly. In fact, the breaks between sessions allow your mind to digest the content you have previously learned and organize them in your brain. Start your study sessions in the morning by handling the most difficult subjects and leave the easier subjects for the afternoon and evening. This approach is needed because the computing and thinking ability of the mind tends to slow down as the day progresses. Maintaining a regular study time conditions your mind to expect certain stimuli during particular times of the day.
There is nothing as important as studying alone and in a quiet place. The dorm, cafeteria, and lecture hall are not ideal venues for studying due to the presence of other people who will inevitably talk. The library is an ideal choice due to the calm and quiet atmosphere. Isolating yourself minimizes distractions and allows you to commit your time to effective studying. If possible, switch off your cell phone, television, computer, or even draw the window curtains if you feel outside activities will draw your attention. However, not all subjects will require isolation. There are moments you may need to have someone else for discussion.
You can never know your level of understanding unless you teach or mentor someone else on what you have learned. Teaching a peer who does not understand a concept helps in studying smartly because of three factors. First, the person’s questions help you to develop a multi-dimensional perspective of a particular concept. Secondly, your attempts at answering the person’s questions help you to make connections among the ideas in a given topic. You get the bigger picture during the explanation of the concept. Third, explaining a concept to another person equips you with better skills for clearly expressing your thoughts and opinions. Teaching typically involves the simplification of complex phenomena. A mind used to simplifying concepts grasps difficult information instantly.
Firstly read to understand
Most students read paragraphs with the intention of finding a “wow” idea that they can cite. For that reason, their reading pattern is distracted by their need to reference. However, this approach creates “information islands.” One way of knowing whether you have formed an information island is by opening up a word document and write in your own words the content you’re reading. A smart reader seamlessly switches between topics while citing ideas that connect to each other. Avoid these islands by reading a paragraph to understand it while marking areas that you feel need to be cited.
Secondly write to understand
Try to connect ideas in writing that at first might seem very different from each other. For example you can try to connect a phrase get my essay done on time ” with another phrase “winter is coming.” Absurd? Absolutely! However, you will be able to appreciate this technique next time you are writing an essay or making a presentation on a topic that you are not familiar with.
Get imaginative and emotional
Use visual stimulation to tackle difficult content. This stimulation is like directing a film because you link an abstract idea to a real-life object or event. Attaching an anecdote to an idea or text evokes good memories that the mind will readily retrieve. Getting emotional does not imply being anxious. It implies having fun while studying even the most difficult subjects. You can simulate feelings and images involved in solving an abstract concept. This strategy shifts the abstract concepts closer to your senses. You are can make jokes about a concept to remember it.
Build models and link patterns
You can use metaphors to establish relationships between complex and simple ideas. For example, I can picture how all these different Lego bricks are being connected till they form an identifiable object such as a car. Imperatively, identify those ideas that keep recurring in a topic. This technique will help you to establish the framework used by the author in explaining concepts. For that matter, you will be able to utilize the pattern in understanding other concepts in the textual material.
Identify and perfect your learning style
Discover whether you are a visual (you map, chart, or brainstorm ideas), auditory (listen to lectures or record own words), emotional (you associate ideas with images or feelings), or kinesthetic learner (you learn by doing). Knowing your dominant style will help you to train yourself to use it more effectively. Most importantly, you must know when each style should be applied.
There might come a time, when tests and writing assignments are coming up, but you feel like you need to take a rest. Take it and don’t feel guilty about it. How? Ask Google to get my writing help online 24 hour Now you can take a day off and then start preparing for tests or exams. A custom writing service might come in handy whether you need an essay, presentation, or speech that you feel won’t get written by itself. Starring at an empty screen won’t help. So reach out for real help, when you feel like you need an extra hand.