Study tips and general learning strategies for students in college.
Get plenty of sleep. Pulling all nighters for studying never helps. You need rest to succeed and take in the information.
Be sure you go to class every day. Being there and being involved in the topic helps you remember things better.
Take great notes. This means writing it in a way that you understand and in a way that you would explain it to someone else.
When you think you understand a concept, try to explain it to yourself in your head. I try to imagine how I'd explain it to someone on a forum if someone was asking me a question about the topic.
If you are stressing about exams, about 30 minutes before they start get a piece of paper and write down everything you are worried about. This will help you enter the exam with a clear head.
Create mnemonics for things you have to memorise, if you can make yourself laugh with it, all the better.
Be consistent with your work. 5 hours of study is much better over 10 sessions than one.
If you listen to music when studying, listen to something that doesn't have words in it.
Practice good sleeping habits, getting plenty of consistent rest helps you think and learn better.
Do as many practice tests as you can.
Figure out how you study best. Some people like short study sessions, some people like longer study sessions.
Do not multi-task while studying. You can not do it. No one can.
Don't study when under the influence of a substance. Always study with a clear head.
Make yourself a study schedule and stick to it.
If you get stuck on something, skip it and work something else and it will probably come to you.
Memories are context specific in nature. The more links you make to relevant knowledge, the better you'll remember it. So, first option is linking it to something else you know well (try to work out how the different things you're studying stick together) but if you can't do that, even just try to apply it to something you know in real life.
Write down key points on note cards to study.
Keep away from distractions. Don't study with electronics on or people around you talking, you are less likely to take in the information adequately.
Set study targets that you can easily achieve.
Getting past the first 10 minutes of studying is the hard part. Once you pass that point you will be able to concentrate longer.
Go talk to the professor during office hours. You will acquire great feedback and learn what you are doing incorrect so that you can improve.
Caffeine will aid you during test taking. The reason being is that caffeine speeds up body processes and will allow you to recall information more quickly than without caffeine. With this being said, do not take caffeine while you are studying as it also decreases your attention span making it harder to focus on the task at hand.
List all the concepts you have gone over since the last test.
Don't cram for exams. If you are studying on a regular basis this isn't necessary. Cramming hurts you because you can't think clearly or take in the information accurately.
Read ahead so that you can focus on the discussion in class.
Get a dry erase board for solving problems on and hang it in your room.
Listen to classical music, it helps you concentrate.
Do not procrastinate. Do the work while its fresh on your mind.
For test taking, don't drink a lot of fluids 1-2 hours before your test. The body takes about 3 hours to pass fluids, and holding back the urge to pee definitely won't help you on the exam.
Don't study in your room. Study somewhere that you can focus with no distractions.
Have a consistent study place, pick one spot and always study there if you can. This will help your routine and help you focus on studying.
Take breaks when you need to. Don't over do it.
If you are doing well, keep studying and see how far you can go.
Even if you hate the subject, find something about it that interests you and focus on that.
Consider other factors and your lifestyle choices. Are you prone to depression (not trying to say this is a choice)? How is that affecting your ability to get motivated? What steps could you take to change this? Do you watch too much television? Maybe it is time to make some changes. Assess everything you do and ask yourself seriously, "what is this contributing to my time on this earth? What would I do differently with my time without this thing/activity? Do the pros outweigh the cons of this thing/activity and even if so, is there something else that is even more beneficial (better pro-con ratio)?"
If you're having a really difficult time focusing on your studies or sitting still, allow yourself to take a five minute break every 15 minutes. This might sound excessive, but you'd still be studying for 40 minutes every hour.
Get comfortable, but stay off your bed and don't try to lay out. This will just make you tired and not focus.
If you're reading from a textbook, take your time. There's no need to rush. If you suddenly get an urged to rush, cover all clocks. Unless you need to be somewhere later, then set a timer and don't look at it.
When you're reading in your textbook, highlight important events and write down any vocabulary you may need to know. If you highlight too much, nothing is highlighted.
If you are given printed version of the course, take notes and don't hesitate to write between the lines as long as it's readable.
Is it basic stuff like dates or vocabulary? Flash cards then quiz yourself.
Learn to summarize and summarize well. You should be able to summarize ten pages into one.
When you have that break, I would avoid things like reddit, tv, internet, facebook... Go do something with your hands. Make a drink, do some push ups, play an instrument, tidy the kitchen.
The best form of study isn't 'cramming'. Keep up to date during the semester. It doesn't take that much effort to do so, and the benefits are that your exam period is far less stressful and you will nearly always get a better result.
Don't study where you relax. Have a dedicated place (library, desk, coffee shop) so you can have a physical and mental separation between "study" and "relax".
When taking notes in class or rewriting your notes while studying use different colored pens. It is easier to recall notes because of the different colors.
Rewrite your notes before the exam. It really helps lock in the information.
Use multiple senses while studying. It helps you retain things better. Examples would be to write out your notes while reading them aloud. Then you are saying them with your mouth, hearing them with your ears, writing with your hands, seeing with your eyes.