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5 Study Secrets You'll Want to Know

Evaluate yourself

After having finished to study, make up your own practice test, which is supposed to evaluate your knowledge on that given topic. If you are unsatisfied with the result, just go back to study some more.

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5 Study Secrets You'll Want to Know

5 Study Secrets You'll Want to Know

https://www.thoughtco.com/study-secrets-1098385

thoughtco.com

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Key Ideas

Studying better

When it comes to studies, most of us tend to get really stressed. Which is basically normal, as it is about evaluating our own knowledge in the different fields. However, there are some tips that can help you pass the exams without freaking out. For instance, going through the books properly: checking out the glossary, index, study questions, can really prove helpful when starting to learn for a subject.

Make use of sticky notes

Using sticky notes is extremely useful when studying for an exam: not only do you summarize the information, but you can also go directly to the needed page, as the note is stuck to that very page.

Using graph organizers

Graph organizers are forms that you can fill out with important information. When starting to actually learn for a test, you just have to go again through this information. Furthermore, graph organizers such as Cornell notes worksheet enable you to check your knowledge at any given moments through different quizzes.

Evaluate yourself

After having finished to study, make up your own practice test, which is supposed to evaluate your knowledge on that given topic. If you are unsatisfied with the result, just go back to study some more.

Use flashcards

Flashcards are always a good idea! Try making flashcards before taking an actual test: on the front of the card write down a term or a question and on the back of it the definition or the answer. You are most certainly going to go back to this studying method, as it has proven its efficiency so many times before.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Note-taking: a powerful tool for learning
  • Notes extend your memories: writing can be seen as an external enhancement of your brain, allowing you to think more complicated thoughts and solve harder problems.
  • Not...
How to Take Notes While Reading
  1. Figure out your purpose.
  2. Choose a technique that maximizes your focus on what is most relevant for your purpose. 
  3. Decide whether to optimize for review or retrieval practice.  
  4. If you do need to go back into the text again and again, create clues in your notes that can help you find what you’re looking for faster.
Figure out your purpose

Ask yourself why are you reading:

  • What am I trying to remember? 
  • How am I going to use this information? (e.g. on a test, cited in an essay, etc.)
  • What do I plan to do with the notes later? Will you be studying off of them extensively? Or maybe you’re just taking notes to stay focused, and it’s highly unlikely you’ll look through them after?

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Visual Learning

... is learning by seeing the information through images, graphs, and other visual materials.

Study Tips for Visual Learners
  • Color Code. Assign color to common themes in your lectures, when highlighting information.
  • Organize your notes by compiling handouts, putting tabs, writing neatly, using outlines, to make your notes appealing.
  • Study the Graphics. Use charts and graphics in your textbook to easily remember information.
  • Draw pictures or figures to accompany the information you're trying to learn.
  • Watch documentaries or videos to get a bigger picture and expand your knowledge on the topic you want to learn.
  • Draw concept maps to easily categorize a certain subject. Illustrate pictures relating to each subtopic.
When to Study
When to Study

Studying time is more efficient if it is spread out over many sessions throughout the semester, with a little extra right before the exam.

Cover each piece of info five times from when you fi...

What and How to Study

Testing yourself, so you have to retrieve the information from memory, works much better than repeatedly reviewing the information, or creating a concept map (mind map).

After the first time learning the material, spend the subsequent studying to recalling the information, solving a problem or explaining the idea without glancing at the source.

What Kinds of Practice to Do
For a particular exam, use the following:
  • Mock tests and exams that are identical in style and form.
  • Redo problems from assignments, textbook questions or quizzes.
  • Generate your own questions or writing prompts based on the material.

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Re-reading doesn't help

Don't just re-read your notes. When you first read, you extract a lot of information, but when you do it the second time, you read with a sense of 'I know this, I know this.'

...

Ask lots of questions

Read once and then quiz yourself. Retrieving that information is what actually produces more robust learning and memory.

Even if you get the answers wrong, you'll still have an idea of what you don't know. This helps guide your studying more effectively.

Make connections

Relate new information to prior information for better learning.

During a second reading, try to connect new information to something you already know.

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The Cornell Method
The Cornell Method

Divide your paper into three sections: a 2.5” margin to the left, a 2” summary section on the bottom, and a main 6” section.

  • The main 6" section is used for note-taking during class.
The Mapping Method

The page is organized by topic. While in class, start with the main topic. Branch off and write a heading for each of the subtopics. Add important notes underneath each subtopic.

This method is useful for visual learners. It helps you understand the relationships between topics.

The Outlining Method

Use headings and bullet points with supporting facts.

  • During a lesson, begin your notes with a bullet point for the main topic.
  • The first subtopic is placed below and indented slightly to the right.
  • Jot down the details below your heading and slightly to the right.

This method is useful when a topic includes a lot of detail.

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Meta-Learning

It's knowing how to learn. Learning itself is a skill, and knowing how to do it well is an incredibly valuable advantage.

Merely acquiring information is not learning....

Learning has 2 phases

Learning is a two-step process:

  • Read/listen: feeding ourselves new information.
  • Process and recall what you’ve just ‘learned’: connecting new materials to what we already knew.
Remembering the right things

You should not waste your time by committing unimportant details to memory. 

Your focus should be on understanding the bigger picture, on how things relate to each other.

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The Art of Note-Taking
The Art of Note-Taking

Even in an age where laptops rule, notetaking is still the tool of choice for highly successful students, entrepreneurs, and leaders.

Tim Ferris attributes his notetaking style as one o...

The Cornell Method

This simple and highly systematic note-taking method helps you to understand key ideas and relationships easily. Best used for:

  • Gathering information from a seminar or presentation.
  • Recording college lecture notes.
  • Studying literature or a textbook.
Cornell Method: How to take notes
  1. Write down the lecture name/seminar/reading topic at the top of the page.
  2. Write down notes in the largest section of the page (right-hand column). Transcribe only the facts using bulleted lists and abbreviations. Take notes of questions that arise.
    3. Create question cues in the left-hand column that you will use later as a study tool.
  3. At the bottom section of the page, summarize the main ideas of your notes. Ask yourself how you would explain this information to someone else. Keep it concise.

Read over your notes in the left-hand column and summary at the bottom as often as possible. Quiz yourself with the questions you've included in the left column. Repeat often to increase your recall and deepen your comprehension.

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Note Taking - Starter Tips

Preparation steps before a note-taking session:

  • Try to get familiar with the topic that is going to be discussed, beforehand. This leads to better understanding.
  • M...
Outline Method

Taking a structured approach to note-taking is the best way. Put the outline notes by choosing four or five key points of the lecture, followed by in-depth sub-points. One way to review is to use the Cornell Method, which divides the note sheet into three sections:

  • Cues: It includes key questions and main points.
  • Notes: Which you write during the class using the outline method. 
  • Summary: Which you can write after class while reviewing.

The Mind Map

The mind map is a visual diagram of abstract concepts.

It works best in subjects like chemistry, history and philosophy, subjects having a neural network like interlocked and complex topics. 

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Learn A New Skill
Learn A New Skill

Learning a new skill can be tough. Those of us trying to master a new language, learn a musical instrument, or take an online course, will find that when the initial enthusiasm dries up, things mov...

Make It A Challenge

Most learning techniques with lots of theory and colorful infographics do not assist in making the information stick in our minds.

There is a need for ‘desirable difficulties’ which exercise our minds and translate into long-term retention of knowledge.

A Pre-Test Quiz

.. or a Q&A session primes the brain to absorb the information afterward, and failing to answer it initially is part of the game.

The brain needs to know that it doesn’t know.

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