Top 3 Study Methods
As if college isn’t stressful enough, students are now facing even bigger hurdles in the current climate as they adjust to attending classes online. Staying home and learning remotely presents unique challenges, especially for students who’ve had a hard time in the past finding a study method that works well for them.
If this sounds like you, remember that you don’t have to study in the same way as someone else in order to succeed as a college student. Finding the right study method for you can be challenging, but it’s not impossible.
Outlined below are three effective approaches you might want to consider using to maximize your time and get more out of your study sessions.
- Sweat Before You Study
Regular exercise is essential to your overall health and well-being. For a lot of college students, though, especially those who are also busy working, taking care of families, or managing other responsibilities, it’s the first thing to fall by the wayside when life gets stressful (and, let’s face it, whose life isn’t stressful right now?).
Even if your schedule is packed, try to find a way to fit in a bit of physical activity before you sit down to study. This doesn’t have to look like a rigorous, hour-long workout. Going for a quick walk around the block or doing a few sets of push-ups and squats can help you get your heart rate up in a simple and socially distanced way.
When you exercise before studying, you can actually boost your brainpower since you’re able to send some important oxygen and nutrients that way. You’ll likely feel more alert (without having to overdo it on caffeine) and will be able to retain new information more easily, too.
- Study in a New Place
This one can be tricky, especially since most of us are staying home more than usual right now. You might not be able to relocate to a library or coffee shop for a dedicated study session. There are still ways that you can switch up your location when studying, though.
For example, perhaps you can switch to a different room in your house or apartment when studying. Instead of studying in your bedroom, consider setting up shop at the kitchen table for an hour or so or going down to the basement or outside in the backyard.
When you change your studying environment, you can improve your concentration and retention levels in a significant way. The new stimuli will work wonders for your brain and can help you feel ready to tackle your to-do list, especially on days when your motivation might be lacking.
- Space Out Your Study Sessions
As an overachiever, sometimes it is very tempting to block off extended periods of time to hit the books.
It might seem like a good idea to dedicate a 10-hour block on a Saturday or Sunday to studying and, depending on your work schedule and other responsibilities, that might be your only option. If you’re able, though, it’s better if you can space out your study sessions throughout the day.
For example, you could try studying for an hour in the morning, a couple of hours in the afternoon, and an hour in the evening before bed.
Spacing things out helps you to retain more information and reduces your chances of experiencing burnout. We all need to do what we can to protect our mental health during this difficult time, and an hours-long study binge isn’t going to be beneficial to your overall well-being.
Try setting alarms to remind yourself to study at certain points during the day, or block off times in your planner dedicated to schoolwork. Whatever you do, be sure to give yourself some time away from studying to recharge and let the information sink in.
Which Study Method Will You Try First?
When it comes to finding your ideal study method, there are plenty of options for you to choose from. Which of these methods seems like it’ll be a good fit for you?
Pick one and give it a try today. Stick with it for a week or so and, if it doesn’t seem to work, go ahead and try something else. You don’t have to be locked into one way of studying for life!
If you need more help finding an effective study method, we’re here for you at UHV. Even if we can’t be with you in-person, we’re still happy to provide support. Feel free to reach out to our Student Success Center.
The Student Success Center is a comprehensive resource center for students that promotes their success by working closely with faculty to provide academic support programs. Through this center, we offer a writing center and a peer education program for students at all levels in addition to supplemental instruction.
I challenge you, jaguar, to reach out to the Student Success Center and learn more about their many programs.