5 Different Ways to Study that Might Just Work for You… It’s that time of you again. Yes, the time has come to stress, sweat and study your way towards kicking some final exam booty. You’re in luck today because we’ve whipped up some a list of super helpful tips and totally different ways to study that will take the pain and anxiety out of your remaining study sessions. Start Out Right Start studying smart and make the most out your time by implementing these pre-study tips. It won’t take long to see an improvement in your overall study process and more importantly, your grades. Study Space We’ve said it before, but never underestimate the importance of the proper study space. For most, the goal is to make the most out of every study session and the best way to do that is by creating a nice little study bubble that is quiet. Not only is it quiet, but it is also free from as many avoidable distractions as possible. This means no Facebook, no Twitter, no Instagram, no Snapchat and no phone! Make things extra easy on yourself by creating a study space that is portable. The ability to pick up and go at any time will make it easier to keep things quiet and distraction free should your study space experience an unexpected bout of noise and commotion. Having a portable study kit makes it super easy to pick up your stuff and move to another location if things around you get too crazy. Viola! Problem solved. Study Time Another way to start your study sessions on the right foot is by hitting the books when both your body and mind are in tip-top shape. You don’t want to be too tired or unfocused when you sit down to study by any means. Not being 100% in the study zone will make it hard to retain the information you’re studying on top of making it much easier to put off your studying for another day. So, preempt this issue by trying to do as much of your studying as possible when you’re at your daily peak mentally and physically. It doesn’t matter what time of day you’re prone to feeling funky fresh as long as you take advantage of it and hit the books with a vengence. You can also do yourself a favor by forgoing the urge to study all night. Doing so is a good way to totally wipe yourself out and not get a whole lot accomplished. It’s easy to avoid the need for an all nighter when you make studying part of your every day routine and make each session count. Basically, don’t wait until the last minute and you should be golden, Pony Boy. Study Tools Do yourself a favor by collecting all of your study tools before you actually get into the study zone. Seriously, nothing is going to interrupt your flow quite like having to put a pin in your studying to grab a pen, paper, computer/tablet, book or any other item you may need to make the most out of your study time. Limit further interruptions by grabbing a snack and a drink prior to settling in for a study session as well. You never know when the munchy monster is going to strike and it can be super hard to concentrate when your stomach is rumbling so loudly that it could be mistaken for a car engine. So, think ahead! Bring along a brain boosting snack that will curb your hunger pains and provide your body with the fuel it needs to rock the material covered during your study time. Do stay away from unhealthy choices that can make your blood sugar spike or make your brain/body feel slugglish, though. Know Your Learning Style Knowing your learning style will make it so much easier to figure out all the different ways to study that are best for you. You may be surprised to find out how much easier studying can be for you upon learning this little thing about yourself. Gone will be the days of struggling to study and actually come away from it with anything other than a sense of frustration. There are plenty of self-tests available to help you determine what your learning style is. It’s possible that you may already have a good idea of how you learn if you already have preferences like reading material, listening to lectures or physically performing a task related to your studying. Take a look at the three main types of learning so you have a better idea of what we’re talking about: Auditory Learners: You’re the guy or gal who prefers to have thing verbally explained to you. You’re brain is a little more adept at receiving the information you hear and holds onto it for later use. Visual Learners: It’s probably pretty common for you to require the information presented to you to be right in front of you in black and white. You need to read things, look at graphs or watch how it’s done in order to fully process what you’re supposed to learn or remember. It’s likely that you’re also easily distracted when made to use your auditory learning skills. Kinesthetic Learners: There’s a good chance your parents frequently had to tell you to stop touching things as a kid if you’re a kinesthetic learner. For you, the hands-on approach is the best way to go. The act of physically doing a task or even writing down the information you’re to learn allows all of the pieces to come together so you can have an “ah-ha” moment. It’s totally fine to have one learning style that really helps you to drive the information home. However, it is a good idea to practice some of the skills associated with other learning styles. You can significantly increase your learning success by broadening your horizons a bit and double teaming the ways in which your brain is able to receive information. Different Ways to Study Okay, we’ve established how to start your study session smart, so let’s get right into the business of the many different ways to study. You may want to write some of these suggestions down, especially since final exams are just around the corner. 1. Work Up a Sweat A little exercise goes a long way for your memory. According to scientists you only need about 20 minutes of exercise before you settle in to hit the books. Squeezing in a quick walk, run or yoga session is said to help you focus better and retain more information. Exercising increases the amount of feel good endorphins pumping through your brain and in turn serves your study time well on two fronts. The first way these endorphins are helping you is by their ability to boost your desire to study for a little bit longer than you may usually want to. Secondly, you will be able to thank those same endorphins with the increase in your ability to recall the information you’re trying to master. 2. Say Loud and Say It Proud We know it may feel silly to sit and read your study material out loud. However, you’ll probably change your tune when we tell you that simply reading information out loud can potentially improve your ability to remember what you’ve read by 50%. Reading out loud is starting to sound a little less silly now, huh? So, make sure you take the time to read your study material out loud 1 to 3 times nice and slow. Really read and absorb each word you read, each time you repeat the process. You can then read your material at a normal pace a time or two before you move on to another phase of your studying. 3. In Summation Don’t be scared because it certainly sounds more intimidating than it is. You’ll more or less be summarizing information you’ve retained through the initial learning process as a way of testing your memory to see how much you actually retained. A common way to do this is by re-writing your notes, any concepts relating to the subject and any other bits of information that pertain to the material you’re attempting to master. In doing this, you’re able to determine how much and how well you’re able to recall information. You can really go the extra mile by creating some summary sheets for each of your classes before exam time, too. This will provide you with an easy study tool that you can pull out with you anywhere and at any time if lugging your books around isn’t an option. Another great way to engage in a bit of summarizing is by stepping into the role of teacher as you attempt to impart the information you’ve already learned onto someone that is new to info you’re teaching them. You can also modify this method by simply engaging in a conversation about the topic you’re studying even if they are already familiar with it. 4. Movie Time Do you remember how exciting it was to walk into class and see the TV cart in front of the room? Those were the days we all loved because it felt like a free day from real class work. Little did we know at the time that our teachers knew what they were doing as they were actually allowing us to receive information in a new way. Since it’s 100% possible to learn some valuable information from watching educational movies/shows, go ahead and head on over to Netflix. Take a good look around as you embark on a hunt to find a documentary about the subject you’re studying as a means to learn and remember more about it in a significantly more enjoyable way. It certainly beats spending hours with your nose in a book! Here’s a tip, though! Definitely make sure whatever you’re watching is accurate before hitting play. It will do more harm than good if you’re viewing a skewed or inaccurate version of what you’ve been taught in class. Capitalize on your movie study session by taking notes in between handfuls over popcorn. You can then compare your new notes to those previously taken so you can see if there are still some areas you need to cover before moving on. You’re able to reinforce what you’ve already learned as well as expound upon that knowledge in a new way. Totally a win, win! 5. Study Party It’s time to phone a friend and organize a study party! Yes, we are indeed suggesting that you interact with your peers and step outside of your comfort zone a bit. There really is a lot of value to engaging in a group study bout with those who are preparing for exams or presentations on the same topic. When studying in a group you are able to gain many new views on the topic at hand, which you may not have considered previously. These new and different perspectives can then help you grasp concepts that you may have been struggling with previously. There’s a long list of perks associated with studying with a group, but the ability to share resources, discuss topics in depth and making the studying a little more interesting, are at the top for us hands down.