How to Study Smart

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Utilize the preparatory time before exams by being efficient and saving up on the time and anxiety.

As the exam clock approaches, the perpetual fear of completing the syllabus remains on the forefront of our brains. We give you some of the tips on how to be efficient during the exam season. Here is a guide to smart studying:

  • Find your go-to method

Find a method of studying which really makes an impact on you. Remember, not everyone has the same study routine. Things strike everyone in a different manner. Some of us may prefer textual reading; others may prefer learning a concept by graphics or simplified layman terms. At the end of the day, understanding and assimilating the information is important. So, find out what type of studying method suits you the best and work towards it.

  • Finding out the utility hours

Of course, for every one of us, there is a specific time of the day when we are the most efficient. Some of us may be nocturnal owls of the night, while others may be early birds. Find out the time of the day wherein your concentration power is at its maximum and use it to your advantage.

  • Invest in making good notes

Of course, note making is something you should put a firm hand on while studying for your exams. Your notes shouldn’t be bulky, that reading them won’t reap any desired rewards. Make use of small sentences, pointers or even keywords. Notes should always contain trivial and compressed information. For bulky matters, you always have your reading to gauge eyes at.

  • Make use of tables, flowcharts for understanding concepts

Making flowcharts or simple diagrams may make understanding a concept of a point easier, than reading or writing it out in a sentence. The human brain responds better to graphical information. Focusing on one particular mental image or experience can create a model one can refer to when trying to understand later on.

  • Use different colours for highlighting different things

Don’t waste a lot of your time and energy thinking about colour combinations, but a simple use of highlighters or a coloured pen, to mark out important things in your notes or texts makes it easier for revision. You know which part requires a lot of attention when skimming the night before your exams.

  • Multi-tasking is a sin

Let’s leave the task of multi-tasking to robots for now. If you have planned to study, shut your mobile phones and other gizmos, which might prove to be a distraction. Remember, smart study requires your concentration to be maximum. Hence, refrain from the urge of using phones while studying.

  • Write your notes via hand

While saving notes on your laptops may prove to be convenient, but written notes are always a big help. In this manner, you go through the matter at least twice, when writing it up for the first time. It lets you analyze which part is more important and which can be skipped, thereby increasing your tendency to process and reframe the information.

  • Do not skim through everything

Having a lot of notes is always helpful, but when you have plenty of them, you tend to skim through all of them. Remember, every person’s understanding of a topic is subjective. Reading from multiple sources will leave you more confused than sorted. So stick to keynotes which have all the required information and reliability.

  • Prepare a schedule for each day

Instead of just spending the entire day focusing on one subject, tackle at least two or three subjects. It gets you rid of the monotonous reading and also increases your efficiency.

  • Take frequent breaks and a good diet

Ariga & Lleras, 2011in their study mentioned that taking regular study breaks enhances overall productivity and improves focus. Take a 5-10 minute break every 40-50 minutes of studying. It can involve walking around your room or listening to songs or just deep breathing. Studying for long hours on a stretch isn’t ideal.

Keep yourself hydrated during exams and understand the body’s requirements. Try to eat as healthy as possible, have a lot of nuts and brain foods, to nourish it. Since your caffeine consumption increases a lot during exam, ensure you have sufficient water to not cause dehydration.

  • Have a good night’s sleep

Lastly, have at least a six-hour sleep each night. Pulling all-nighters is not a healthy option. Sleep experts state that learning or practicing difficult material before sleep makes it easier to recall it the next day. So arrange your schedule in such a way that you study the hardest topic before you sleep.

So have good food, good mood and zeal and sail through your exams, following these tips!


Feature Image credits: green springs school

Avnika Chhikara
[email protected]

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