Studying is integral to a student’s success in academics—regardless of whether they are pursuing a master’s degree or are still in high school.
However, while the fervent desire to learn is there, the necessary time to cover everything in your syllabus is not. It is not actually for a lack of academic initiative that causes us to miss a target outcome in our grades, but rather a lack for sufficient time. To you, there is simply not enough time in the world. However, this is not necessarily the case. More often than not, you actually possess more than enough time to study everything you need to. However, it is a lack for proper time management that would cause you to think you are pressed for time and are constrained to making do with the limited hours you have.
The reality is, you may have excellent study habits as well as a complete set of educational supplies, but if you do not complement these with appropriate time management, you would find yourself cramming at the last minute. Remember, one should study smart and not hard. If you did it right, you would see results. Fortunately, science has backed up the most effective ways to study and here are some of those:
- Thwart your tendency to forget
You may have answered an exam wherein you know you once knew the answer to an item but have now forgotten what it is. Well, if you wish to address this dilemma, you need to study and review the material you have just learned within 24 hours after the first time you have been exposed to it. Moreover, this has a cumulative effect in a sense that even if you studied the same material for less than ten minutes the week after, you would be able to retain a hundred percent of the information.
- Study when you are tired then get some rest
Too many, this might be counter intuitive advice but it actually works and science can prove it. Studying before bed can actually help you retain information better which results to development of new skills such as playing instruments and speaking a foreign language. Aptly designated as sleep-learning, the brain does its work best during a slow-wave sleep which means your brain would be getting the reactivation and restoration it needs during the time it needs to rest at night.
- Use active recall
Instead of reading and rereading a textbook or a study material over and over again, opt to close the book or cover the source material and recite or jot down everything you think you have learned from what you have just read. In an article Psychological Science has published, it is said that students are advised against reading and rereading textbooks. This is because it can lead them to think they know the material better than they do because everything is already at their disposal and in front of them and does not require memorization. So close your books and start using active recall.
- Use print material
Today, with the rise of tablets and smartphones as a medium for learning, students are afforded the convenience of accessing learning materials from the tip of their fingers. Moreover, these devices are also portable which would make them handy to bring just about anywhere. However, it has been proven that traditional print materials have the upper hand. This is because print materials have less to no distractions built it on them which mean a student is hardly likely to stray off to a social media website when he gets bored. Although using an interactive digital interface would enhance your academic experience, it would actually require more repetition and exposure from you before you would actually learn the new material as compared to reading from a computer screen.
- Listen to music
Last, but definitely not the least is to have some background music complement your studying routine and activities. However, choose music that do not have lyrics lest you find yourself singing to them and have your attention divided. Your best bet is to stick with classical music where you can concentrate better.