Many students come to college unprepared for the amount of homework and studying that is needed to succeed. I know I found it extremely difficult figuring out the correct ways to study for exams. This can cause major stress in students lives but it doesn't have to. I have put together several steps that can help students stress less and study more.
Step 1: Plan Time for Studying
By planing a definitive time for studying you can discourage procrastination and prevent your work load piling up and creating a stressful situation. Find time every day, even if it is just 15 minutes a day.
Step 2: Priorities!
It is important to prioritize. Sit down and figure out what things need to be studied the most and what things just need to be looked over briefly. What tests are coming up this week and what tests are coming up later? What will be the most difficult and what will be simple? Figure these things out and create a list with 1 being what needs studied the most.
Step 3: Understand the Assignment
Sometimes it's difficult for students to study because they don't fully understand what has been assigned. If you find that you don't understand the material, make sure you do before leaving class. Ask a classmate or the professor for clarification if you find comprehension difficult. Understanding what to do, how to study, and what to study can shorten study time and make it more efficient.
Step 4: How Much Time Will Be Needed?
Predicting the amount of time you need for each assignment creates a smarter and more productive study session. By keeping track of the actual amount of time you spend on your assignments, you are more likely to concentrate and less likely to become bored.
Step 5: Understand Textbooks
How long does it take you to read five pages of your textbook? Text books are loaded with information so it is important to be able to read through while picking out information that is helpful and relevant to what you are trying to accomplish. If you find yourself zoning out and not picking up on the information try reading the passage again.
Step 6: Prepare for Class
Many times professors will assign all reading assignments pertinent to the lesson before class. Review all material before class to better prepare yourself for class discussions and possible quizzes. Participating in class can help students be more engaged in their learning and better remember what they learned.
Step 7: Pay Attention to All Parts of the Textbooks
Pay attention to charts, diagrams, and special "boxed text" areas. They are definite aids to understanding the material.
Step 8: Review What You Studied
Every time you study, spend at least ten minutes reviewing the material from your previous study session. These "refresher shots" are part of the secret for long-term memory retention. This habit of frequent review also results in less time needed for studying prior to a major exam
Step 9: Learning Is Accumulative
New material must be incorporated with old material and ideas from lectures, readings, and any other assignments. You have to continuously make the connection in your mind from new material to previously learned material and experiences. Putting it all together is easier if you schedule time daily to read, to think, to write, to reflect, and to review.
Step 10: Stay Calm and Pass the Test
Stay calm before a test. If you have studied hard then you should have nothing to worry about!