College Study Tips

We are drawing closer to finals week, so here are a few tips to help your study habits!

Time Management and Scheduling

Before you hit the books, have a plan, and set up times for when to do what. It will make studying so much easier, but also you won’t deal with the “I don’t even know where to start” conundrum. Scheduling will also help you actually study instead of cramming the night before. Be sure to find right places to study to prevent distraction, somewhere quite to help you focus. If you’re scheduling is hectic or just haven’t been able to spare any time, try to review between classes.

Teach Someone Else

Material fluency is essential, the best way to see if you have a good grasp of a concept is to try to teach someone else. Study groups are an excellent way to interteach, and they might bring up something you had never thought about or something you had forgotten.

Mnemonic Devices

Mnemonic devices are used to help you better remember or memorize information. You’ve probably made an acronym, rhyme, song, or even associated a fact/term with an image at one point to help you recall something. A classic example would be ROY G BIV, an acronym, and some may even say fictional persona, to help you remember the visible color spectrum: red, orange, green, blue, indigo, and violet.

Practice/ Quick Write

Writing is a great way to get all the ideas out of your head, even the bad ones. Have a topic or concept in mind and just unleash it onto the page. Then later review it and rewrite. It’s helpful preparation for upcoming test essays or paper. Physically writing things on paper also helps with better recall. Handwriting things force the writer to summarize concepts rather than typing verbatim.

Be Sure to Get Good Sleep

Sure you could cram the night before the test, but once you walk into the classroom, you won’t be physically prepared. Your brain is probably foggy, and that will not help with recall. Sleeping is when encoding happens in earnest. Encoding is when your brain transcribes information into a memory and either store that into your short or long-term memory. After studying sleep, you’ll be more likely to remember.

Take Breaks and Have Fun

Studying doesn’t have to be totally soul-crushing. Take breaks often, but not excessively, and do something stimulating.  A light workout, like a dance break, watching an exciting video on the topic, recreationally read, or even get in a quick nap to synthesize information works.Whatever it is, make sure your brain is still doing something productive! 

These tips and tricks are ways to make the study process more practical and will have you ready to walk into any classroom with the confidence to pass.


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Noora hails from the best city in the state of Missouri, Kansas City. She's a student here at Truman, majoring in Political Science with a focus in International Relations. The closest way to her heart is chocolate.

This is the official blog of the Truman State University Center for International Students.