4 Key Study Habits for Success

Friends, work and a whole host of other things stretch a college student in different directions — usually away from homework. While in school, you’ll spend your time in a lot of different areas and the moments you spend on homework is valuable; you need to get all you can out of them.

Here are a few tips to get you pointed in the right direction.

Portion Control

How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. Your homework isn’t any different. Research from STAT Med, a group specializing in time management and exam prep for medical students, shows a 10-minute break is in order every 50 minutes to an hour of work. The longer you go without one, it gets harder — in both your output and mental processing. Plus, staring at a screen for hours without a break isn’t healthy for your eyes. Get up, take a walk, maybe even make a paper airplane; just do something away from a screen.

Notation

Take notes on everything — lectures, readings, even study sessions. They’re a great reference for exam prep or drafting a project or paper. And even if you don’t look them over later, just jotting down things that stick out to you as significant will help you remember them.

Rest, rest, rest — catch them ZZZs.

Watching the sunrise is far more enjoyable and tranquil when you’re not scrambling to find sources for the 20-page final paper you’re only 10 pages deep in. Don’t wait to start something the night before it’s due; don’t kick your sleep to the curb. If you don’t think you can get something in on time, reach out to your professor and request an extension; they were once students, they’ve been there, they get it.

Remember, trying to perform well during finals on little to no sleep is like swimming from a shipwreck to shore across shark-infested waters with a raw steak tied around your ankle. You won’t make it, and if you do, it’ll only be after a harrowing journey.

Group Study

Not to be confused with the ever-prevalent study date — good luck getting anything done with that special someone present — group study sessions provide the perfect chance to learn through some social time with friends; an exception to the idea that socializing and homework don’t coincide.

Especially useful for exam prep, these study sessions let participants bounce questions and answers off what may be one of the greatest learning aids out there — their fellow humans, particularly (and ideally), classmates.

Individuals possess unique strengths and weaknesses, and coming together in a setting like this lets them take advantage of their strongpoints and compensate for areas they struggle. What you may forget a classmate remembers, and vice versa.

Now that you’ve been handed some tools we hope will help you find academic success, go. Go forth and enjoy the exciting, enriching journey of learning that awaits you.