Top tips for smarter studying at home

Written by Pano Savvidis // April 12, 2016

Whether you are doing your homework, preparing for an assignment or studying for an exam, it is very easy to lose motivation to study if you do not feel organised, you are distracted or just feeling tired. Sounds familiar? These simple study tips will help you get in the right mindset.

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Create the perfect studying environment

The first step to smarter studying at home is creating the perfect studying environment. Make sure your study area is quiet, comfortable and free from distractions. Try to experiment with different study areas. For example, if you get too distracted when you are at home, try studying in the school library or in any other quiet area. If you are not required to use technologies for your studying, try switching off all of your devices.

Stay organised

Use an academic planner to keep track of your assignments, homework and deadlines.You can use a traditional paper based planner or use the resources available on your school website or online. Always organise your learning materials. Keep all materials for different subjects in different folders, use colour coding or labelling to make your studying more effective. Most importantly, not all organisational systems work for all students, so make sure you develop a system that works for you.

Manage your time

Effective time management is one of the most useful skills that you can learn while at school. This is a lifelong skill that will benefit you in many ways. Plan how much time you want to spend studying a specific subject every day and set yourself realistic deadlines. Do not forget about any extracurricular activities that you might have and make sure you have enough time for studying.

Communicate with your peers and teachers

Engage with your peers on social media for asking questions, sharing your thoughts and resources or collaborating on different projects. What is more, teachers are always more than happy to answer your questions and to help you with your studying. This also shows that you care about your academic performance which can eventually lead to improved grades!

Turn your notes into flashcards

Turning your notes into flashcards is very useful when you are studying for an assignment or an exam. For instance, if you are studying geometry formulas, write the name of the formula on one side and the formula itself on the other side of the card. Use paper index cards or try some online resources and mobile apps for creating flash cards.

Take a break

Your brain can only take a certain amount of information at a time. If you do not take regular breaks, you will most likely find it difficult to memorise information and you will end up feeling stressed and frustrated. For every hour that you study, you should take at least a 15 minute break to do something that takes your mind away from studying. For example, go for a walk, listen to some music, play a game, chat with your friends or even take a nap.

Reward yourself

Positive reinforcement is a great tool for staying motivated. Reward yourself in small ways after completing tasks. Treat yourself to having your favourite snack, watching a movie or playing a computer game. Find whatever keeps you going!

Study all the time

Finally, try your best to study all the time instead of studying a day before your test or exam. Reviewing your notes daily and learning in smaller chunks will help you stay organised and will lead to better knowledge retention. This will definitely lead to achieving better academic results.

Studying does not have to be very stressful and time-consuming all the time. It is all about taking a different approach and finding what works for your. Hopefully, you found these tips useful.

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