Wednesday, 9 August 2017

3 Questions To Ask Yourself About Your Study Habits


What is studying, anyway? Maybe you’d never actually ask that question out loud: After all, you’re not a freshman, anymore. But the further you burrow into higher education, the more painfully you may realize the inadequacies of your study skills.
While you don’t necessarily have to be sitting upright at a desk in a quiet room in order to study properly, there are definitely a few key characteristics of good studying.

Is your mind actively engaged?

Staring absently at your class notes or listening to recorded lectures while rehearsing the argument you had with your bestie last week will do you about as much good as sleeping on your text book. Maybe you can study where there’s background noise—or maybe you can’t. Maybe you can focus on class material while hanging out with a friend—or maybe you can’t. There’s really not a right-or-wrong posture or setting for effective studying to take place, but there is probably a situation that works best for you—and many that don’t.
You’re an individual, and you need to get to know your own propensities and limitations. Then, you need to be honest with yourself about your ideal study setting and make it happen.

Are you properly motivated?

The whole self-discipline thing is hard enough, when you’re motivated to achieve. But if you aren’t, the cards are stacked against you. Will an “A” in the class secure your place on the dean’s list? Will it help you qualify for a scholarship, grant, or other financial aid? Maybe that kind of over-arching motivation just isn’t enough. I once heard it said that “an adult is one who parents himself.” Part of parenting includes doling out punishments and rewards. If you don’t study well for the 2-hour block you’ve carved out, will you still let yourself go watch the basketball game tonight? If you really work hard, will you earn a latte after the game?
You need to find something that works for you, again combining self-awareness and self-discipline. If you’re not up to honing those two skills, then you’re lacking more than study skills— you’re miles from maturity.

Can you rehearse the material, blind?

Do you remember your first keyboarding or computer class, where you learned to type? Once you learned where all the keys were and which fingers to use for which keys, you probably had to take “blind typing tests.” The idea was that if you could type without looking at the keys, you had a mastery of your newly found skill. The same is true with any material. If you really know it, you should be able to rehearse it mentally, without prompts. You could make up flash cards or have a friend who’s in the same class (or has taken it before) ask you about general topics, but until you can go over the information in your head, you really haven’t quite studied enough.


No comments:

Post a Comment