Common College Obstacles:
#2 Good Study Habits
One thing that you can be certain you will have to do in college is study. You will not be successful throughout college without studying. It may take the process of trial and error before finding out what techniques work best for you. Performing poorly on a test or assignment is definitely not a good thing, however you might realize that the way that you prepared for that test or assignment did not work and you need to try something different. If you are like me, notecards were life savers when studying for tests but others might perform better re-reading the text book. Try different things, it should not take you but a test or two to figure out what study techniques work best for you. You will also find throughout college that you will have to adjust the way that you study for different classes. What works for a math exam will likely not work for an English exam. Each student will have to determine what the most effective study techniques are for them, but there are a few universal study habits that would benefit every student to know.
If you are using a computer to complete school work do not have any webpages open on your computer that are unrelated to what you are doing, these would be webpages like Facebook or Twitter. In addition, put your phone on silent or do not disturb. You can always return a missed call or text someone back once you are done studying or taking a break. TV is another distraction. Even if it is background noise, it can easily disrupt your concentration. If you are distracted while you are supposed to be studying that will only prolong the amount of time it takes you to study because you are likely not absorbing the same amount of information you could be if you were only focused on one thing. In short, set aside an hour or two and go to a quiet place. It can be your bedroom, the library or your back porch but just make sure where ever you choose to study there are no outside distractions.
Goal Oriented Study Sessions:
Having goal oriented study sessions will heighten your productivity level. Sitting down to study for hours and hours with no end in sight can be discouraging. Before you sit down to study for a test or to write a paper have a goal in mind. For example, in the next hour I will master two chapters for a test or complete two pages of a paper. Make sure the goals you are setting are attainable. You can also reward yourself at the end of your goal oriented study session. Your reward can be a 30 minute TV break, coffee break, exercise break- whatever you like! Having goal oriented study sessions will eliminate feeling overwhelmed and will also give you something to work towards. One of the only ways this will work is if you are staying ahead of your school work, which leads us to the next tip for good study habits…
Do not procrastinate:
Is anyone catching onto a theme here? Procrastination was also something that was covered in the previous common college obstacle blog about time management. Clearly, procrastination is not something you should make a habit of in college. Completing your work a little bit at a time is a study tip you should get in the habit of. This will lessen the amount of work you have to complete in a given period of time and will also lessen the amount of stress you might feel when preparing for a test or completing a paper.
Take advantage of college resources:
This might be one thing that will take some adjustment when you are beginning your freshman year in college. It can be a little intimidating to seek out the help of people at the college but the resources are available to help you succeed so take advantage of them. Each resource center has location details and the hours they are open listed on each college website- take a minute and find that information. In college professors do not check in and make sure you are completing your assignments and studying for tests- it is your responsibility to do those things on your own. It will be up to you to seek out that extra help for your school work, whether you ask a professor to or go the math lab for help, you have to make the initiative.
Use the first few weeks of college to get acquainted with your teachers and the college campus, find those additional college resources and practice these study habits – it will pay off!