Study Smart with HopeWatch
Whether you are preparing for assignments, revising for exams or getting a head start on your chosen subject at university, our study tips will aid you in your preparation.
1) Choose the right study environment
Do you have enough space to spread out your notes and books? Is there enough light? Is your chair comfortable? These are the questions you should be asking yourself when selecting a place to study.
Finding a study space that best meets your needs is extremely important in helping you study efficiently. Make sure you pick a place where you will not be interrupted and free from any distractions. For many of us, this may be our bedroom, the local library or in a study space at your school or college. However, some people may find that a busy coffee shop is an ideal study spot. Think about what works for you, and take the time to get it right.
Make sure you feel as comfortable and able to focus as possible. For some people, complete silence is ideal, for others, background music will help. Also, be mindful that you do not need to study in the same place every time – moving around will help keep your mind fresh.
Top tip – put your mobile phone out of sight to stop you from being side tracked by Instagram and Snapchat!
2) Create a study timetable
The key to study success and being well prepared for your exams is creating a decent study plan. By creating a good timetable, you can make sure you are dedicating enough time to each subject and schedule in time away from your studying to relax and do things that you enjoy such as hobbies and sports. You can find free Exam Timetable templates online to easily make your study plan in minutes.
Everyone is different when it comes to developing a study routine. If you study better in the morning, start early before taking a break at lunchtime. Or, if you are more productive at in the evening, take a larger break earlier on before getting stuck in to your studying. Be sure not to overdo it by slicing your revision into reasonable chunks limiting yourself to a sensible amount of study - and remember to get good night’s sleep in the evening!
3) Set yourself goals & reward yourself for progress
Give yourself SMART goals:
- Specific – Know exactly what you need to accomplish and what you hope to gain from doing so.
- Measurable – To enable you to track your progress and know exactly when your goal is met.
- Achievable – Be reasonable when setting goals. They should be not completely out of reach or too easy for you.
- Relevant – Make your goal worthwhile. It should be something that is important to you right now.
- Time-Bound – Set a deadline for each goal to be accomplished – e.g. within two weeks.
Perhaps you want to remember several facts per day for a History exam, or maybe you want to create 20 flashcards for a particular Physics topic. Whatever the target, as you reach it, tick it off and move on to your next goal.
When you hit your goals, complete work and meet deadlines reward yourself with fun activities. This acts an incentive to get you through your studying and give you an extra boost of energy to achieve your goals.
4) Know how you study best
Are you an Auditory, Verbal, Visual or Kinetic learner? Use study methods and techniques that will encourage the best learning for yourself and promote greater results
By knowing your learning style you can adapt your methods of studying:
- Auditory - If you are an auditory learner, you will learn best by listening. For example, you could use audio cues such as speech, music or rhymes to help you remember facts. You could also listen to podcasts relevant to the subject you are studying.
- Verbal – Verbal learners learn best by reading and writing the information they need to remember. If you are this type of learner, read study guides and textbooks and write out notes to help you study.
- Visual - Visual learners study well by seeing. You will prefer using visual cues such as images, pictures, colours, maps and diagrams to organize information. You could draw up mind maps, use colour extensively in your note taking or watch videos related to your topic on YouTube.
- Kinaesthetic – This type of learner learns best by doing. You will enjoy putting your learning into practice by participating in role-playing, create flashcards building models and drawing diagrams.
5) Ask for help
If you are struggling with anything, ask your teacher, family or friends for help. Alternatively, use study guides to help break down tough subjects.
Family and friends can be extremely useful during study and exam periods. Use them to your advantage. Explain a piece of information or topic to them. This should help you to get it clear in your head, and uncover any areas where you need more work.
6) Take regular breaks
You may feel the most productive thing to do is to study for hours on end without stopping, but in reality, this will result in fatigue and when your brain is forced to store many new patterns in a short space of time, it can get them jumbled up.
Taking regular breaks can boost productivity and improve our ability to focus on your study. Go for a walk, hang with friends or relax and watch your favourite TV show. It is important not to overdo your studying.
If you follow our top 6 tips for studying smart, you will be on your way to achieving top grades in your assignments and exams!
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