You may think that some people are just born with a great sense of how to achieve academically, and others will never have it. If you are lumping yourself in the category of “will never have it”, it is time to change your outlook! Great study habits are a skill that can be learned, and with practice they will become almost second nature to you.
Set Your Time
Setting aside a certain amount of time each day will ensure that the job of studying gets done. Knowing when you will be studying helps to carve out that time in each day, before it gets overrun with other responsibilities and obligations. It is even better if it is at the same time each day, as it will become part of your normal and expected routine. If you are a morning person, plan your studying in the early hours when you feel alert and awake. Other people do not really wake up until later in the day; if your most productive hours are in the afternoon, wait until then to start your studying.
Little at a Time
If you set aside a time every day to work on studying, you will never find yourself falling too far behind with a mountain of work to catch up on. Don’t leave studying for a big test for the night before; working in small increments will help you retain what you are studying more efficiently. Studying for too many hours at one time can actually be counterproductive, and can lead to stress and feeling overwhelmed. Chipping away little by little will lead to the biggest gains in your studying.
Work From Most to Least Difficult
It is tempting to try to tackle the least difficult assignments first. However, starting with the most difficult is the best practice; don’t save the worst for last, tackle it first and move on to something more enjoyable. If you make it a point to conquer your studying from most to least difficult you will feel more in control and less a victim of all of the studying you have to do.
Choose a Good Study Spot
If you know everyone at the local coffee shop, and they all want to chat, that may not be the best place for you to get your work done. If you love to clean and cook at home, you may need to get out of the house to focus on non-domestic tasks. Some people can focus more easily in a loud, crowded cafe, some people find music helps them study, and others need it to be completely quiet to get anything done. Figuring out what environment is most conducive to studying will help you immensely. Wherever you study, make sure you always have all of your materials ready; nothing breaks your studying flow like searching for notes, or even a pencil. Keep your study materials together and you’ll always be ready for your next session.
Get a Group
While some people really need solitude while studying, there are other people that thrive in a group study session. In a group you will be able to ask questions, bounce ideas off of one another, and find encouragement. Studying with others can really help motivate you if you are having trouble getting into the mindset of studying. As a long-distance learner, if you don’t have any “classmates” nearby, finding other people who just want to study different materials together can help create a fun study environment.
No, not while you are studying, but definitely make sure you are getting enough sleep at night. A lack of sleep can make you less alert, and your mind will wander more easily. To stay sharp and focused, make sure you are getting as much sleep as you need. Aim for at least 8 hours a night, but some people need even more to function effectively.
If you have been feeling like your study habits could use a tune-up, try some of these suggestions to improve your next study session. Colorado Theological Seminary is an online christian college offering a diverse range of classes to enroll in. Put your study skills to work at our online christian college, and enroll today!