We all have that one friend who always seems to ace their exams without much effort. Sure, they might be naturally smart, but there’s no reason why you can’t do the same with these 10 study tips guaranteed to boost your grades! Don’t believe me? Here’s why you should take my word for it.
1) Block out distractions
Because studies show that a distracted mind is an unproductive one, there are a few ways you can avoid distractions when you study. First, make sure your surroundings are conducive to studying—and not conducive to, say, Facebook stalking your ex. Second, set aside a time in which you won’t be interrupted by anyone for anything other than an emergency.
2) Play to your strengths
Take a moment to think about what you’re good at. If you’re not sure, look at your GPA. If it’s not high enough, consider which classes you did well in and try again. Even if your overall GPA is decent, there may be certain subjects that you performed better in than others. Maybe math isn’t your strong suit, but writing papers is? Maybe, for some reason or another, history comes easily for you—but calculus is more of a challenge?
3) Sleep sufficiently
Getting a good night’s sleep is one of the best things you can do for your memory. The brain processes and retains information during sleep. If you regularly deprive yourself of sleep, your ability to remember what you learned throughout your day suffers greatly. Good memory skills mean better grades—and let’s face it, better grades mean better job prospects down the road. So how do you get a good night’s rest? Just follow these simple tips
4) Use study guides and flashcards
Studying is one of those things that a lot of people are bad at, whether because they don’t know how or just can’t be bothered. No matter which category you fall into, flashcards and study guides will almost always help—and they’re easy to make.
5) Work in short periods of time.
Are you a student who always procrastinates? If so, then it is important that you learn how to work in short periods of time. Many people will tell you that working in small doses is a key part of studying effectively and if that sounds like you, it’s probably something worth trying. Take breaks and reward yourself: Another key element of productive studying is knowing when it’s time for a break. At some point, while working on your homework or studying for an exam, your mind will naturally begin to wander.
6) Read actively.
We all know reading is important, but it’s hard to read a ton when you have so much other work on your plate. However, there are a few strategies that will help you get through more text and retain more of what you read in less time. The first is active reading—if you’re only skimming over text or watching a video lecture, then your brain isn’t going to learn as much as it could be engaging with information in an active way.
7) Know yourself
Regardless of your study style, having a solid grasp of how you learn is critical for success. Knowing how to study and when (and when not) will go a long way in making sure you’re successful. If you know that your biggest slump in grades comes after 8 p.m., make sure you avoid late-night study sessions—or plan accordingly by studying earlier in the day and then powering down around 6 p.m. so you have eight hours or more before class starts again at 8 a.m.
8) Get into a routine
If you’re a student, chances are you’ve already got a busy schedule of classes, clubs, and extracurriculars. These things are good for keeping your social life active but may hinder your studying if you don’t have a solid routine.
9) Develop good reading habits
What’s one of your biggest challenges with studying? Well, if you want to become a more effective and efficient student, there are numerous habits you need to develop. Start by improving your concentration, developing good reading habits, and avoiding procrastination. Let’s take a look at how…
10) Don’t cram before an exam!
Cramming is one of those things that you always do at the last minute. However, your body has a limited amount of storage for information, so if you cram then your brain isn’t going to remember most of what you just crammed. Studies have shown that for optimum learning and retention, it’s better to space out studying over time instead of trying to pack everything in all at once.