Photo by design to forget
Another school year has started, and by now the reality has set in: Summer is over and it’s time to get serious and hit those books. It’s an ideal time to improve study habits that may have gotten a little rusty over the last few months. After all, it takes time to develop good habits, and a fresh school year gives students the opportunity to jump-start their academic identities. Here are some of my tips to help reinvigorate your academic career.
- Get your stuff together: Make sure everything you need is in one place. Nothing will derail a productive study session like interruptions for finding pencils, paper, or that textbook you left who-knows-where. Find a place where you can keep all of your supplies orderly and ready. When I was younger, I had a basket to put my school supplies in. When I was in high school and college, I had a box in the trunk of my car for studying-on-the-go.
- Find a place where you can work comfortably: I like ambient noise when I am working (or studying). Some people need silence-I need a little hustle and bustle going on around me. My ideal study spot is a coffeehouse-preferably with free Wi-Fi. It keeps me steadily caffeinated and occasionally offers just the right kind of temporary diversion.
- Work in short bursts: The “right kind of temporary diversion” I mentioned earlier keeps me from getting overwhelmed. I’ve also found that explaining what I’ve just read to someone else (usually my unwitting study-buddy) helps the information stick more firmly in my memory.
- Eat healthy snacks while you study: The brain consumes about one-third of the calories we consume every day. My hit list includes broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, and sugar snap peas. I’m also a big fan of dried fruit (sulfur-free!) and protein bars. I find I’m much more productive if I’m not dreaming of my next meal.
- Get organized: Know what you need to do before you sit down to do it. I love lists, and my favorite thing about lists is checking completed tasks off of them. Keeping track of tasks (whether in list form or otherwise) will also help circumvent any forgetfulness.
What study tips and environments work for you?
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