4 Study Habits Every Student Should Know
- October 23, 2019
- Posted by: Hats & Ladders
- Category: Advice
Now that September is officially over, it’s time to start putting your knowledge to the test! While we’re positive that all of you high schoolers and college goers are studying hard and focusing in class, we want to throw in a little bit of Hats & Ladders help. Here are 4 super important study habits that will surely make a difference in your classes.
- Make it a habit to write down your deadlines.
Keeping track of deadlines is a skill that will last you the rest of your life (yup, that’s a long time). Whether it’s events, work shifts or projects, there will always be something you need to complete or attend at a certain time. Think of your agenda as your personal assistant. They go with you everywhere and know your schedule to a T. Being on time and organized is a skill every employer wants to see. Be proactive and write your deadlines down ahead of time!
2. Annotate while you read
Have you ever finished reading a chapter of a book and thought to yourself, “Wait … what did I just read?” Yeah, so have we. Don’t fret, asking this question is actually a great start! To help you actually answer it, try highlighting and taking notes while you read in the margins, on a separate piece of paper, or in your favorite note-taking program. These notes could be anything from an interesting fact you read, an example of a concept you’ve been learning, a sentence that confused you — just about anything!
Here’s an example of what annotations look like (see below):
Don’t worry if you don’t know whether a phrase or sentence is important the first time you read it — just note it. Like, actually write “Is this important?” in the margin.
When you’re done the chapter, go back and use your notes to help you figure out how to answer this question for yourself: “What did I just read?” Start making connections between concepts, themes, and ideas that you’ve found in the chapter. Not only will this make you an active reader, but it’ll help you pull out the relevant information from a text so that when it comes to writing your essay or answering questions in class, you’ll know all of the key points.
3. Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Speaking of answering questions, let’s talk about asking them. You should never feel pressured to know everything about a certain subject. Chances are, someone else in the class has the same question as you. Don’t be afraid to raise your hand during class and ask for help or clarification. If you don’t feel comfortable asking in class, jot down your questions and ask your teacher at the end of class. Teachers and professors are more than willing to help out!
4. Handwrite your notes
While we know it’s tempting to type out all of your notes, studies have shown that students who handwrite their notes perform better on tests and exams. We say: Don’t be afraid of the pencil! Not only will it limit your distractions in class, but it will improve your memorization skills and allow you to absorb more information.
Okay, actually 5. Switch off your phone, and turn on your brain!
We know you’ve probably heard this about a million and a half times, but we’re going to say it once more for good luck: Your phone is distracting when you’re studying! If you want to make it fun, turn this into a friendly competition with your pals. First-person to text the group chat on a study night loses. Not only will you feel better about getting the work done, but you’ll all be able to say you did all you could to remove distractions and focus up! Okay, hopefully, that’s the last time you’ll have to hear that.
Let us know which trick you found most helpful!
While you’re here, why not check out some Career Tips?
For more information on any of the above tips, please visit these resources:
Brain Drain: The Mere Presence of One’s Own Smartphone Reduces Available Cognitive Capacity https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/full/10.1086/691462
For Note Taking, Low-Tech Is Often Best https://www.gse.harvard.edu/news/uk/17/08/note-taking-low-tech-often-best
The impact of study skills and organization methods on student achievement https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED501312.pdf