A New York Times article did a great job of summarizing research on studying, and why some traditional advice may actually be incorrect
Four more tips that you may find useful over the next 2 weeks:
- Retrieval is a potent learning event. Recognition is not. This is the #1 thing I learned from my graduate course on memory (and I still remember, more than 20 years later). If you just look at a fact or definition over and over, or keep reading it, you are unlikely to learn it well. If you actually make yourself remember it without looking at it (e.g., cover up the definition and produce it from memory), you are improving your ability to remember it at a much greater rate.
- Use review questions. Many professors provide review questions, at least in undergraduate courses. Don't just skim them. Make yourself answer them to be certain you truly know the answers. If your professor doesn't provide review questions, go through the textbook and your notes and write your own.
- If you didn't do well on an earlier exam or quiz, ask to meet with the professor to go over it. Even if the material on the next quiz/exam does not overlap at all, seeing the questions you got wrong, and understanding why, will help you approach the next exam. Maybe you struggle more with multiple choice problems and you can talk through strategies for answering them. Maybe you forget to read the full question. Maybe you have trouble recalling material. You won't know until you see your past performance.
- Take breaks, please! Yes, you have limited time left before your exams. Of course you want to do well. But you will be more functional if you take occasional breaks to eat, stretch, sleep, etc. Don't just eat while you study -- take 15 minutes to eat and chat with a friend or watch a bit of TV. Have a dance party. Stretch every hour. Make sure you get enough rest. Really, these things will help you be able to study better, and think better the day of the exam.
“The post Effective study habits first appeared on Eva Lefkowitz’s blog on December 8, 2015"