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How Good Are Your study Skills?

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With one term left until exam season, it’s important to remember that success in studies and exams is not only about ensuring you have learnt everything you’re supposed to know; it’s also about the way you study.

Successful students do well because they have managed to develop the right study skills and habits alongside all that knowledge consumption. Not having those skills and lacking the right approach to your studies can significantly hinder your performance so take a look at the following questions and start the process of evaluating how good yours are.

Do you cram all your studying together?

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We’re all guilty of it. However, constantly leaving your work to the last minute resulting in late nights attempting to keep your eyes open is not the most conducive method for effective study.

Short and regular study or revision sessions are a better way to go plus it ensures your long-term memory is engaged, therefore making your brain remember the data well throughout the year until the exams (and beyond).

Do you start with the easiest subject first?

Be bold: the subjects and topics you find difficult will require the most effort and energy to get through them so face them when you’re at your optimum level of focus and perhaps break them down in more manageable chunks or concepts.                                    

Do you plan when you’re going to study?

Organisation is key to joining the league of successful students. Creating a schedule which has specific slots throughout the week for when you are learning or revising is a great way to stay consistent with your work and it gets you into a good routine in the few weeks just before the exams.

Do you set goals?

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You’ll be more effective with your study sessions if you set clear objectives for each session as you’ll then know exactly what you want to achieve. It will also help you to be better aware of the progress you’re making within a subject and highlight any areas of concerns which can then be flagged up and tackled.

Are you surrounded by distractions?

Distractions can be destructive (not to sound overly dramatic), so avoid studying in noisy places and try to find somewhere that’s as quiet and comfortable for you as possible. It is thought that soft music in the background is a good thing for your brain to help you concentrate while doing something else as long as there aren’t any words (i.e. not songs) as those would distract the brain trying to detect what is being said.

Do you study by yourself?

It’s of course beneficial to be able to study effectively by yourself, but working with others is not without its merit. Joining forces with others will mean you can discuss topics and concepts in a more interactive way, thus easy access for help when you’re struggling understanding something. And you’re likely to finish the work more quickly while in a group too so it’s a bonus!

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, try to start implementing better habits and  you’re bound to see an improvement with your studies.

Rianne McLean

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