Here’s the MAGIC; Study Methods!!!!!!!
It is true that most students don’t know how to study. Sometimes we leave course work piled up without ever going through them, only to burn the midnight candles when there’s a test or exam. Although it is ideal to put in more time when there’s a test or exam, but studying only when there is a test/exam always becomes a daunting task which will leave you overwhelmed and drained. Here are a few tips to help with studying:
1. Schedule Your Time:
Now, bring together all the material you will need to cover before the test; past question papers, texts, notebooks and handouts, etc. If you have your syllabus handy, that’s fantastic. Then begin to map out precisely how you will spread them out daily, and be done with them in ample time, way before the test date.
Now, if you don’t have any exams anytime soon, and its beginning of term/semester, a good plan would be to spend 2-4 hours daily, studying the material you were taught that day, or material on the classes you will be having the following day. The latter method keeps your brain razor sharp and alert, for the day’s classes. The confidence, will help your retention.
The SQ3R method simply means, to open your materials one after the other, page by page, say your major texts, and your notebooks for 1 course at a time; You SKIM, and make QUESTIONS line after line, page by page, if you like(you know, just like Comprehension passages); You put away the books, and answer the questions very frankly.
Then you open your books to READ and RECALL, then REVIEW (mark) your answers.
I would usually advice that you retake the test, with the questions you missed only, and repeat the process until you’ve learnt the material ‘back to back’.
These initial questions will give you a candid picture of where you stand as far as that material is concerned. The good thing is, it’s a private analysis, so you’re safe. Don’t panic though if you don’t do well the first time. Your brain then goes into overkill mode to ‘kill those demons’, and guess what? Its your private little game to play, so you get to do your goofing in secrecy because shine you must, trust me. And that’s the sweet part, when the actual test scores are out, and you’re flying above the roof, pinching yourself, just to be sure it’s happening!
3. Mnemonic Devices/Acronyms:
Mnemonic Devices/Acronyms: You remember, Every Good Boy Deserves Favor (EGBDF), names of the treble clef lines in Music.
Or Mr. Niger, used to embed into memory, the first letters of the characteristics of living things in Integrated Science? That’s a great example of the use of Acronyms.
It is an age-old method used to commit to memory subheads, lists, and the likes. You just throw the initial letters together, to make a word ( doesn’t have to make sense so long as you can pronounce it).
*More on Mnemonic devices later on.
4. Teach It:
Teach It: Teaching what you understand thus far to a group of fellow students ( a reliable study group maybe) will help you gain mastery of the topic. You will find yourself faltering in areas where you’re weak, and quickly go back to relearn the topic.
Good news is, you don’t even need other people to rehearse your lecture. You may just as well, deliver your lecture to a recording device, or even to a stash of stuffed animals, for added drama, if you like.
For some reason, it’s difficult to write poorly, something you can talk about, confidently.
5. Study Groups:
Study Groups: In case you didn’t notice, this is another tip on it’s own. No man is an island, and you’re bound to learn from the presentations of other course mates, rubbing minds, sharing resources, etc. The fewer and more dedicated to common values the group members are, the better.
Now, you know exactly how to map out your study schedules. Your ‘to-do’ on Day 1, will obviously be different from that of Day 2, giving you a rich study experience.