Studying is difficult! You have to sit there in front of your books reading things that might have been interesting the first time, but all you can think of now is doing anything but study. Or you stress and focus on the anxiety of getting through everything. Worst of all, you really apply yourself and it just feels as if you can’t remember a thing.
First of all, take a deep breath and calm down. Being stressed and anxious won’t help you remember any better.
Secondly, maybe you are just using the wrong study method. We’re all wired differently, which means we absorb information differently.
So, what are the methods and how should you approach them?
Simply put, you learn by sight. You need to see things to understand. Graphs, diagrams, pictures, maps, etc. these are the things that’ll help you learn and remember. You should also try to group or lay things out differently or even taking notes in and array of colours can help. Even watching films or short clips can aid you.
You learn by listening, but more than that, even if you have background music playing, you’ll be able to concentrate better and remember what you’re learning. What can sometimes happen, if you need background noise to study is that you’ll click your pen, hum or pace while you’re thinking. Try creating rhymes or songs or even just reading your work out loud.
To learn by reading, listening, speaking and writing. Yes, that sounds broad, but what this boils down to is that you’re the type of person who needs to read up on something, then listen to it and finally speak about it. In this way, you can make the information your own by not only absorbing it but also explaining it.
Learning by touch and actions. You need to experience things hands-on, for example, when calculating something you write it down or count on your fingers. By doing experiments or acting something out, you can better remember things. Even writing things down or talking with your hands – as long as you are actively participating, you’ll remember things better.
You need to reason your way through things (and you love math – there’s a logical structure to things). You’re a big fan of the why and how; needing to understand the reasoning behind something to fully understand it. Patterns, groupings, organisation and facts are what you crave.
You need to work with people; you love group projects – the more the merrier. You best perform as part of a study or discussion groups. You enjoy telling (and listening to) stories and bouncing ideas off your fellow studiers, as these help you develop your own ideas further.
You are a one-man wolf pack and an independent thinker. You enjoy the quiet and can’t stand being micromanaged. You need to spend time on your own to work through a problem to fully understand and grasp it. Set your own goals and targets (just remain realistic), and work with a log book or journal to keep track of your goals.
It’s also important to remember that things are never black and white, you might lean towards two or more styles. The best thing to do is test the different styles, even combine them, and see which works best for you.
Alternatively, speak to our qualified tutors for study advice. Call 084 11 438 48 or visit us online; they are available Monday to Thursday 6 pm to 9 pm, school and public holidays excluded.