Are your college study habits up to snuff? If you’re planning on attending a university, it’s likely that you’ve already developed at least a few habits for studying that have led you to some academic success. It is highly likely however, that your college experience will be significantly more challenging academically than high school was. More work in addition to much greater levels of freedom can be a lethal combination for some would be scholars. In addition to higher expectations, academic success at a university level is based on far fewer opportunities to perform. Rather than a plethora of assignments, usually the bulk of your grade in a college course will be based almost completely on how you perform on a few exams.
Your college study habits will be in some ways similar to those you practiced in high school. Having a good note taking strategy is paramount. Each time your instructor speaks make sure you’re writing something. If allowed, take a computer or phone to class with you. Recording your class sessions (again assuming it’s allowed) can be a great study aid when it’s time to prepare for a test. Noticing what the instructor emphasizes in class will allow you to focus on the material most likely to be found on an exam.
One effective studying method to consider adding to your bag of tricks is to create flash cards, or little games of association which will assist you in learning the material. It’s also essential that you have a quiet place without distractions when you get set to study. In college this can often be easier said than done. Don’t forget however, that your campus almost certainly has a library open to all hours; make sure you take advantage of it. Don’t wait until the night before the test to start studying either. In order to give yourself the best chance of success you want to avoid cramming. The night before the exam should be to review material you already know, not learn new material you don’t.
Leverage the power of groups while developing better college study habits. Form a study group with fellow classmates or seek out study groups orchestrated by the school. Studying with other people will help you attack the material from different angles. People tend to see things differently and incorporating other perspectives and viewpoints will give you a more thorough understanding of the subject. If your college does not offer groups consider finding a partner or even your roommate to help you study. You can ask each other questions pertaining to the upcoming test and even create a sample test to take to see how you do. The more you do with the material the better you will do on your test.
Another vital component of strong college study habits is a proper diet coupled with plenty of rest. A healthy lifestyle does more than just increase your chances of reaching old age; it also greatly increases your mind’s ability to retain new information. A mind suffering the effects of sleep deprivation or a lack of essential nutrients will be far less effective at grasping new material. To maintain maximum focus, alertness, and clarity, make sure you’re getting plenty of rest and eating a nutrient rich diet.
Strong college study habits are the single most vital skill set to ensure success at the next academic level. Failing to do so will make it more likely you’ll have to retake courses, make you miss out on grad school and may limit your future career opportunities. Make sure you’ve developed the necessary college study habits to create a great college experience and a great life after your academic days are done.