The new calendar year is your opportunity to review study methods that work for you and where you can make improvements for 2015. There’s still time to make your new year’s resolutions and these study tips can help you improve your strategy to achieve your study goals and ambitions.
Keep reading for our list of the biggest study tips to start the new year on track. Feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comments at the end.
1. Set Study Goals
You may have set study goals at the beginning of the academic year so January is the ideal time to step back and review your progress. Ask yourself some key questions; did you set realistic goals? Do you need to work harder now to achieve your goals? Ensure that your study plan is based on your study goals as the two are so closely linked.
2. Build a Study Plan
Break the cycle of cramming for tests before it starts by creating an effective study plan. Cramming is a last resort for students who have left themselves with no other option. Don’t be that student! It’s not a sustainable way to learn. Take the time at this point to prioritise your study plan which will motivate you to the end of the school year.
3. Take Regular Study Breaks
You’re not a superhero, there’s no way you can do it all without giving yourself time to recover from the work you are putting in. Along with your study goals, integrating personal time and study breaks into your study routine is important for numerous reasons.
A study conducted in the United States proved that going for a walk 20 minutes before an exam boosts your brain power. This idea can be applied to regular studying also.
4. Embrace New Technologies
Do you think studying = pen + paper + textbook? The education community has progressed to a new level where technology is a staple in almost every classroom. Just take a look at the recent #HourofCode project that over 90 million people have tried (so far!) to see how advanced our nations have become. If you want to try a new learning technology, get started with ExamTime’s free tools here.
5. Ask for Help
University students have access to a number of invaluable services including library courses, study skills workshops and IT services. These facilities are in most cases free so you have no reason not to use them. Investigate the services that are available in your school or university and keep a mental note of what you may find useful in the future so you can save time and money.
6. Find a Healthy Balance
Take this opportunity to evaluate yourself both physically and mentally. Is your engine running on low? Stop saying “I never get enough sleep” or “I’m eating too much convenience food” and do something about it!Make the change and see how it positively affects your study routine, this should motivate you to maintain a healthy balance going forward.
7. Be Positive
Your attitude has a big impact on the level of study that you get done and the effectiveness of your learning process. If you keep saying that you can’t do it and won’t commit to the idea of learning, attempting to study will become even harder for you. Keep your chin up and be positive, you are the one who controls your future. If you’re having a moment of weakness, take a look at these motivational quotes for some inspiration.
8. Collaborate with Study Partners
At this stage of the school year, you should know your classmates pretty well. This is a good point in time to select a couple of study partners who you know you work well with and are motivated to achieve good grades also. Don’t worry if you can’t meet up too often, you can use online tools like the new ExamTime Groups tool to communicate and share study notes with each other.
9. Make Studying Fun!
Many students don’t like to study because they associate it with doing work. Clever educators have recognised this and used teaching strategies such as “Gamification” and the “Flipped Classroom” to engage their students in theory they find challenging. Even if your teacher isn’t using these methods, you can integrate some fun into your study by playing a game with timed flashcards and sharing quizzes with your friends.
10. Establish a Good Study Routine
Your study routine is comprised of more than planning what to learn and when. One of the main concerns is your study environment.
Find a place to study which is quiet and has a low level of distractions. Alternatively, you could also try switching it up by sitting in a different place in your school library every day and see how this works for you.
These study tips will encourage you to embrace this opportunity as a fresh start. Build your new year’s resolutions based on these pointers to ensure you are focused for the remainder of the school year.