Studying is a very important part of doing well in school. Yet many people fail to properly plan for it. They are in a rush to learn all of the information at the last minute, and then they don’t do well on the test. Not being well prepared can also increase test anxiety. Making study goals is a big part of being successful. It helps to break down the overall learning process into manageable parts.
Studying doesn’t have to be something you dread, so make it fun! Do your best to really focus on what you learn in class. Take quality notes and highlight in your book so that you have the important information to remember well documented. Get yourself organized and you will have half the battle won.
Set a schedule of time for studying that works for you. Some people do better studying all at once and others do so in short spurts of 20 minutes or so. Take a good look at your schedule and your time available. Prioritize the class you need to study for the most, and study for it first. Try to review notes or flash cards daily so that you can continue to enhance what you remember.
Are you a morning person? If so, study first thing in the day. Your mind will be more alert and you will have fewer distractions. Plus, you start your day out knowing that you already kept your study goal and that is a good feeling. Studying won’t be pushed aside for other things that come up in the day.
If you are worn out by the end of the day both physically and mentally, then don’t wait until then to study. You won’t get the most overall value out of it. Take one day per week when you don’t commit to any studying at all. This break will help you to get back on track and to avoid feeling burned out by studying.
Be disciplined when it comes to your study goals. You may want to put aside studying so you can go shopping, hang out with friends, or other social events. Yet your grades can really suffer you and you don’t want that to happen. Balance your time so you do get all the studying done that you need plus you get to have some fun too.
With your study goals, put some rewards out there too. This can include going to dinner at your favorite place if you studied well all week. Maybe you can treat yourself to a new outfit if you study as you planned and get an A on your next test. The goals should be personalized to you so that you will feel like what you get out of it is worth the time you put into the studying.
This will help you to stay motivated so that you don’t fall short of those goals. Continue to challenge yourself but keep those goals reasonable. From time to time, re-evaluate what you have in place and make positive changes where you can.
Setting Study Goals from Louisville University (PDF)
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