Welcome back, everyone! As fall quickly approaches, we know that midterms cannot be far away. With almost half of the semester already behind us, it’s time we sync into a rhythm to optimize studying habits and tactics so as to make sure we are working smart! If you have exams coming up, are new to college or grad school, or otherwise seeking to optimize the way you approach schoolwork, this article is for you! Keep reading below to set yourself up for success today…
Let’s Chat… Optimal Study Habits
- Flashcards: Arguably one of the oldest strategies in the books, if you’re opting to memorize a group of concepts or words for an upcoming test, creating flashcards and continuously testing yourself on each concept is a great way to get familiar with a large group of concepts in an effective way. Even transcribing your previously written notes onto a new format (flashcards) will help you commit the ideas to memory before entering that self-test phase of preparation. If this seems like the right route for you, make sure to start ahead of time so as to have at least four or five days completely dedicated to hammering in those concepts through self-testing methods.
- Quizlets: Quizlet is a phenomenal online platform for creating study guides, transforming study sets into online flashcards, and otherwise storing key concepts in one organized place to refer back to as you continue to study. If you’re drawn to an online study format, this might be the best place for you!
- Note Compilation: My personal favorite strategy, deemed “note compilation” will enable you to piece through a semester-long of notes and slowly draw the most important concepts, only to compile them all onto a new, separate document. Whether you’re doing this by hand or typing into a new document, I find that doing so helps me to refresh my brain on past concepts, reignite an understanding of key points, and ultimately create a guide to read over several times that contains what will likely be on the exam! Doing so also helps me to recognize concepts or terms that have been heavily repeated throughout the course, and therefore hold notable value.
- Written Memorization: As it relates to compiling your notes, writing down the most important key terms over and over to instill a repetition-focused memory is another strategy for memorizing key terms in a class that requires extensive vocabulary or concept memorization. Again, start ahead!
- Conversation: Once you’re in the final stages of studying, and often a night or two before the exam, I encourage you to sit down with a study mate, or even a friend or parent and talk through the concepts you’ve been working on mastering. Gaining a new perspective from a classmate, or even showcasing your understanding of a concept to someone unfamiliar with the subject is a great method to test your true understanding of the material.
It’s normal to feel overwhelmed about exam season, but figuring out the best method through which you are able to study concepts is your first step to creating an exam routine and achieving success.
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