Top Ten Tips to Improve Study Skills - Search Degrees Online, Find the right online degree for you!

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Top Ten Tips to Improve Study Skills


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Academic success isn’t all about how smart you are. It’s more about how focused, diligent and determined you are to succeed and learn. Many students make the mistake of assuming they will succeed simply because they think they will. However, they fail to examine whether or not they have good or poor study skills. Take a few minutes now to access your study habits as you read the tips below. While these tips sound simply like common sense, many students fail to do them. Making these necessary changes can dramatically improve your chances of doing your best.

1. Manage your time. Everyone feels short on time and long on to-dos, tests and deadlines. The best investment you can make towards a successful academic career is to learn to use a planner (daily and monthly). The daily planner helps track what you need done daily while the monthly calendar helps you keep abreast of “what’s coming up” and see an overall big picture. Managing, and planning, for your entire schedule (classes, tests, socializing, vacations etc.), will help maintain focus and consistency when you study. Carving out such times can be very helpful.

2. Participate. It's all too easy to cut class. Some one has said, “90% of life is showing up.” This certainly applies to school. If you’re not there and expect to get by on the reading or notes from friends, in the long run you sell yourself short. Learning comes by repetition – hearing, reading, writing, again and again. So the more you expose yourself to the material, regardless of the medium (lecture, lab, discussion, reading, writing etc), the more likely you’ll retain it.

3. Do all assignments. This means completing all the readings and assignments, even those you aren’t required to turn in. Though some things in life can be learned simply by watching or listening, most academic information cannot be acquired this way. You must do the work of absorbing it and making it “your own” by doing the work yourself.

4. Take good notes. Note taking is a developed skill. But it begins with attentive listening and using a system that works for you. Many schools offer help in this area so take advantage of such services. Be sure to review your notes daily as well as keep them organized so that you can refer to them often as needed, especially in preparing for exams.

5. Find a good place to study. A proper study environment (good lighting, comfortable, free of distractions etc) is crucial for focused studying. If your environment is not conducive to studying, then it just wastes your time as little is retained or understood.

6. Try to read ahead. Get familiar with the material to be covered in class before that session if possible. This will put you at an advantage because you will listen more actively to the lecture as well as have a chance to ask questions for the instructor to answer in class.

7. Take care of yourself. You cannot study effectively when you are mentally or physically tired. Be aware of your limits and try to maintain a healthy balance of study and recreation. Eating healthy and sleeping regular hours can greatly improve your ability to succeed. Many schools also offer help with managing stress so make use of such resources if necessary.

8. Consider forming a study group. Some students study better alone but there are some advantages to studying in a group – for example, you can compare notes to see if you missed something important, you can drill one another, etc.

9. Avoid procrastination. This is the number one reason for stress and failure at studying. Poor planning and distractions are often the culprits for procrastination. Make a plan and stick to it. Don’t fall into the rationalizing of “I’ll do it tomorrow” because something else always comes up. No one succeeds by putting things off and doing it last minute.

10. Ask for help. Instructors and schools want students to learn and succeed. For whatever reason, if you are struggling in one class or all your classes, ask for help. Everyone needs help to be the best student he can be so don’t be shy about reaching out for assistance. You’ll be the one to benefit in the end.
Top Ten Tips to Improve Study Skills - Search Degrees Online, Find the right online degree for you!

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