It’s no secret that studying is the key to success as a student. It’s also not a secret that not everyone knows how to study effectively. Different people learn and retain information in different ways, and ultimately you need to find out what works for you. Here are some study tips that will help you stay on top of your classes.
Know When to Study Alone
Having a study group can be helpful if everyone is on the same page and stays on task, but sometimes you just need to be by yourself if you really want to get the most out of a study session. It will be that much easier to stay on task.
Create a Study Area
Your surroundings can make a big difference in how much you get out of a study session, so make sure you create a good study space. Creating the “perfect” study space is part of finding out what works for you, but ideally it should be a quiet, well-lit area free from distractions. It shouldn’t be in the same room as a television or anything else that will encourage you to get off-task, nor should it be in a place that gets a lot of traffic. It should also have plenty of space for you to organize your materials, something you will have no matter what kind of homework you may be doing.
Find a Way to Organize Your Notes
The notes you take in class or while you read your textbook will make great study materials, but you should do more than simply read them to yourself when you study. Organize them in a way that helps you retain the information, whether this means turning them into flash cards or dividing them into separate categories. Once again, it’s all about what works for you.
When you have to study for a test, try to eat some healthy snacks such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Avoid too much processed junk food as it can actually affect your ability to concentrate.
Avoid Cram Sessions
You’ll remember what you learn a lot more if you study every night throughout a semester instead of staying up all night cramming before a test. Some of what you learn will be due to rote repetition over a period of weeks, but it will also greatly lower your stress level if you’re not trying to learn weeks worth of information in one hectic night. For subjects like electrical engineering, trying to learn all of the information and concepts at once simply won’t work.
Every so often, try testing your knowledge with your organized notes and flash cards. Part of your studying is to prepare for exams, so testing your knowledge instead of simply reading from your notes and textbooks will be a great way to prepare for this and retain what you’ve learned.
Don’t Overdo It
There is such a thing as too much studying. You will get tired and “hit the wall” after a long session, and pushing yourself beyond this point does more harm than good in that you will actually start to have trouble retaining any information. Listen to your mind and body, and take a break when you start to get tired or frustrated.
These are some of the more basic study tips that a student can follow. Whether you are getting an online master’s in electrical engineering or taking general classes in a traditional setting, these tips will help you stay on task and make your study habits more effective.