How You Should Really Study

Tired of pulling caffeine-fueled all-nighters for tomorrow’s exam? Homework may help you learn the material, but there is a lot more you can your courses better. With finals coming up, here are some tips you can use to study effectively and bring up your borderline grades.

1. Sleep and manage your time wisely.

Sacrificing sleep for extra study time is actually counterproductive. Regardless of how much you study a day, if you sacrifice sleep time in order to study more than usual, you are likely to have more academic problems, not less, on the following day. Spread out your study time and don’t put it off until the last minute.

2. Take notes in class and go over them at home.

Good studying at home begins with taking notes in class. Instead of snap chatting your friend during a lecture or tweeting about how much you want to go home and sleep, jot down the main points of the lesson. Once you get home, review and rewrite your notes. Take this opportunity to fill in the gaps of your memory while the information is still fresh in your mind.

3. Have study sessions with a friend.

Chances are, you are probably not the only one who is trying to study for the same test. Try assigning chapters and take turns teaching or quizzing one another. Ask each other questions that you do not understand and have a conversation about the topic.

4. Use flashcards.

For classes such as Chemistry and Biology that require you to know chemical formulas and a wide range of vocabulary, you can use flashcards to test whether or not you know the information. Write the question on one side and the answer on the other, then test yourself. Not only does this method help you distinguish between what you do and do not know, but it’s also convenient; you can study your material anytime and anywhere.

5. Use mnemonics.

Having trouble remembering the order of words? Mnemonics is the use of acronyms to help you remember names, dates, facts, or figures. For example, PMAT (prophase, metaphase, anaphase, and telophase) can help you remember the different stages of cell division for Biology. This memory technique helps your brain encode and recall important information.

While there are many more strategies to studying effectively, these are five of the many. Find a quiet place where you can study without distractions. Rather than trying to blindly memorize what you have learned, make sure that you understand it enough to explain to a person who knows nothing of the subject.

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