Improvement Of A Student’S Studying Skills

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Studying is an essential skill that you should develop and enhance in order to have a triumphant of a journey in university. Not only it will contribute to reducing and diminishing your stress levels, but it will also save you a huge number of time slots in your schedule, and as a student, time management is key. There are various numbers of methods that one could use to master this skill, as the author of The Study Skills Handbook explained that study skills can be acquired through practising and experience (Cottrel,2008).

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The first step towards mastering your studying skills is by a clear and vague understanding of your own limitations, preferences and abilities. And this can easily be done by measuring and observing past studying experiences, understanding what made an amazing studying experience, and what made a terrible one, then make an extended full detailed chart to better understand and point out what to avoid and what to proceed doing. After understanding yourself, you will be able to develop a comprehensive timetable to manage your time, and this can be done by four core stages described by Mitchell and Gysbers (1978) as the following: planning, designing, implementing, and evaluating. Following those phases will allow you to create a schedule that will guide you and coordinate every hour of your day, which is going to make sure that not even one minute is missed unproductively. Or alternatively, you can follow a simple mathematical formula called Pareto’s Principle or the 80/20 Rule, created by the famous Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto in 1906, and organised by Juran, J. (2004), which states that “80 per cent of your results come from 20 per cent of your actions” (Pareto, 1906). In other words, bring most of your attention towards 20 per cent of tasks and activities that will eventually result in 80 per cent of what you initially craved for.

The second and one of the most crucial aspects of studying is verbatim note-taking, and it can be from multiple learning resources such as lectures, group studying or online tutorials. This allows you to instantly recall information whenever needed. There are mainly two tools that could be used in this case, one of which is using a laptop, the second of which is using papers, and the most effective and efficient of which is the latter. A Princeton University study lead by Mueller, a graduate psychology student at Princeton in 2014, discovered that although laptop note takers recorded higher average words per lecture, it was not as effective as a slow, deliberate handwritten note, which have worked better for the majority of student in both long- and short-term recall. Many techniques and tricks could be used to optimize your note-taking results, but the technique that proved useful over the past years is the Cornell Notes system, created by Walter Pauk in the 1940s, which focuses on writing down notes as beneficial and as brief as possible. It starts by adding some basic information about the lecture such as name, date, page number and subject, then dividing the page into a small column which is the recall section, and a large column which is the notes section, and ends with a summary section.

Finally, and the most underestimated aspect of study skills is adjusting and adapting to university life. One of the key factors to a healthy and smooth transition to university is the current parent’s relationship status, as researches found “Perceived parental social support was of interest, given findings that parental support is related to a higher-grade point average in university” (Wintre, Yaffe, 2000: 13). Having fun and socialising is crucial to the adjustment process, without having fun, anxiety and stress will rise, which will result in serious failures. Without socialising and being comfortable around others, you will not be able to present your ideas and be creative, your presentations would not be as professional as they should be, and group studying would be much harder. And as Cottrell (2008) argues that one of the essential factors of a successful studying is group studying, which is to be focused on to have further successes. In conclusion, acquiring as many studying skills as possible is the best way to maximize your studying experience, and to get the most out of it.

Time management is of the highest importance of all. Note taking is what remains after the lecture ends and it what you will rely on to study and prepare yourself for all examinations. Socialising and having fun are going to motivate you to continue and never give up, and it is what will give the ability to group study with your colleges and friends. You should know yourself, know your strengths and weaknesses, and work towards eliminating your weaknesses and enhancing your strengths,And make the most of it.

15 Jun 2020

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