Improving your study habits is the key to an easier transition from high school to college. The first year of college can feel like a struggle trying to adjust to the new learning environment. Here are 10 ways to improve your study habits and make sure you pass every class.
1. Eliminate Distractions
One hack for improving study habits is eliminating distractions. This study habit should be the first thing you do before you start studying. For me, my biggest distraction is a messy room. I will find any and every available task to do to put off studying, so before I start I make sure I’m in a clean and quiet environment. If your biggest distraction is your phone, sit it away from you. If it’s your television then turn it off. Whatever your distractions are, try your best to distance yourself from them, even if you have to study in your bathtub. This will allow your mind to focus on studying, so you can better absorb the information. Don’t be like SpongeBob when he was trying to write his ‘What Not To Do At A Stoplight’ paper. You’ll notice how much more your able to focus and learn when there is no interference.
2. Have Three Sets of Notes
Another hack for improving study habits is having three sets of notes. This study hack is one I’ve used throughout my entire college career and is great for improving the way you study. First, have your original set of notes that you took during class. Next, have your second set of notes where you’ve had time to do the readings and edit them making the notes more detailed. Lastly, copy the second set of notes to help you remember the information. I guarantee this will help make your exams less stressful because it helped me in some of my hardest classes. Do this study habit along with your reading assignments and you’ll make a perfect score every time.
3. Teach What You’re Learning
Teaching what you learn is another hack for improving study habits. For this study hack, if you can explain what you’re learning, you can understand what you’re learning. Explaining a problem to someone else may help you figure out where you went wrong and how to find the solution. This is a great start to improving your study habits and boosting your grades. When you’re explaining the problem step-by-step, you’ll notice how it doesn’t flow and those points of inconsistency are where you need to focus your studies. Once you’re able to teach the subject to someone else and they understand it, then you’ve mastered the subject. You’ll definitely see improvements in your study habits and your grades.
4. Start A Study Group
Starting a study group is another great hack for improving study habits. Study groups are super helpful and can mean the difference between passing and failing a class. For this study habit hearing another student explain the subject in their own words can help you understand the subject better. Study groups are also helpful for students who have a hard time staying focused by themselves. In study groups you can help keep each other on track. In a study group, you’re less likely to feel confused all the time, because if one of you doesn’t understand a section of the subject, odds are someone else will. Study groups are awesome because you can all work on improving your study habits together. It can also help you make new friends!
5. Record Your Class
Recording your class is another helpful hack for improving study habits. Audio recording your class is a great way to start improving your study habits. Having a copy of your lecture allows you to reflect on it for future reference and will help you make more detailed notes. Having an audio copy of your lecture also allows you to study while completing other tasks. For example, instead of listening to music while doing laundry, listen to your lecture. This is a great study hack for students who work and don’t have time to sit down in the library to study.
6. Do The Reading
Doing the reading assignments is guaranteed to help in improving study habits. Surprise, surprise! Turns out your teachers were right. Who would have thought that reading your textbook would actually teach you something [insert sarcastic eye roll here]? Your textbook has been written by one or more people who are considered experts in that field. Textbooks are meant to be a guidebook and give you all the essential information you need to excel in the subject. For this hack, doing all the reading assignments when they are assigned, and you’ll see a dramatic improvement in your grades. It will feel like the class is easy, but the endurance level hasn’t changed, you just understand everything.
7. Quiz Yourself
Quizzing yourself can be a great way to see how much you’ve learned and start improving your study habits. Make a quiz of everything you need to know for your exam, then take the quiz to see where you’re at. If you didn’t pass a section of the quiz, try focusing your future study sessions on that section. Continue this until you’ve mastered each section. But don’t stop there. Take the quiz until you pass every time. This way when exam time comes you’ll feel confident in your answers. Trust me, this will save you a lot of sleepless nights in the long-run.
8. Pace Yourself
Everyone learns at a different pace. If you feel like you’re getting left behind in your class, don’t worry. This may mean you just need a little more time on the subject. For this study hack, try scheduling days where you focus on a particular subject, that way you can get caught with the rest of the class without stressing yourself out. This is sure to improve your study habits by letting your mind learn at the pace it’s meant to. Learning something new takes time, patience, and dedication, so don’t get frustrated if you don’t get it right away. Trying to rush the learning process won’t help anyone and will ultimately result in your downfall. But be sure to let your teacher know you feel the class is moving too quickly, because you may not be the only student who feels that way.
9. Don’t Cram
The last thing you want to do is cram. Cramming is not the way to go when trying to improve your study habits. Having a last minute review is fine, but trying to learn everything in one night is just going to leave you with a hodgepodge of information that you don’t understand. Your mind needs time to absorb what you’re studying. Cramming will leave you stressed, anxious, and probably with a headache. You definitely won’t be improving your study habits this way.
10. Ask For Help
It’s funny how the simplest solution to improving your study habits seems to be the hardest thing to do. Whether you’re embarrassed, nervous, or a little too prideful to ask for help, know that your teacher doesn’t want you to fail. Your teacher is there to guide you through the course, so if you need help ask for it. Either they themselves will help you or they will provide you with the resources you need to help yourself. They may even decide to make a study guide for the class. This is one of the best things you can do to start improving your study habits. Remember that your teachers are not mind readers, so if you’re struggling let them know.