Slay In College With These Back To School Study Tips

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We get it: There are parties to attend, friends to make and activities to join. But amidst all of the fun that comes with the first few weeks of school, there’s also – you know – classes. And some of you might actually be determined to make your mark scholastically this year. Believe it or not, being a straight-A student doesn’t always mean you need to slave away in the library all day and night. Studying “smart” can be just as important as studying hard. We have a few study tips to get you started on the right track this semester.

Develop systems that work for you.

Different things work for different people – so find what study systems work for you. This can be anything from color-coded tabs to intense outlines to pneumonic devices. It doesn’t matter if it seems silly to your friends – you’ll be laughing all the way to that A+.

Manage your time well.

It can be tempting to procrastinate when there’s so much fun stuff going on. But if you do a little bit each day – instead of saving all of your work for one very long cram session – it will go a long way to prepare you for test day.

Make sure you really understand the content.

Too often, we read or hear things without absorbing the content and instead think, “OK, I get it. Next!” Before you move onto new material or a different task, make sure you understand content and concepts. If you don’t, ask your professor or invest the 30 minutes to swing by during office hours. Chances are good that your teacher won’t be eager to answer your emailed questions at 2 am on the day of the test, so pay him or her a visit during the semester.

Avoid distractions in your study space.

Your study space needs to be sacred territory. Whether it’s a silent cubical in the library or a table in your apartment, make sure that – much like your actual study habits – you have a workspace that works for you. When it’s study time, put away your phone and avoid social media. Do whatever it takes to focus, focus, focus.

Go to class.

This seems so obvious, but many of us – particularly in the first year of college – have operated under the belief that we don’t need to be in class every day. That’s true – but you do need to go to class if you actually want to pass. So, suck it up and show up.

Meghan Schalk

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