Studying is never really fun. In fact let's face it we all procrastinate and pretend that our tests, quizzes, etc are a lot further off than they actually are. As a fellow student I just want to share my little tips and tricks to studying or cramming if you put it off.
- Spread out you're studying. If you know you have a test at the end of the week designate days for each section of the chapter. That way the night before the test you can just go over it briefly instead of cramming and potentially forgetting it all. I know this is hard and it's really easy to just leave it until last minute, but trust me this works way better than last minute studying. It also helps if you have lots of tests, quizzes, in class writing etc. that way you study for everything and you don't need to freak out before each test. Well it makes me feel better anyways.
- Have a killer playlist. Now, I don't about you but if i'm not pumped for studying chances are I will get distracted or just not study. So this is vital! Make a study playlist. Or find one on Spotify. I've been using Spotify a lot lately, I LOVE it. Play songs that make you feel happy. During finals week last year I listened to Disney music straight...for weeks. Let's just say my family was a bit annoyed with me after a while. Lately though i've been listening to a lot of pop music. Plus you can rock out while studying or dance in you chair, or fist bump for a few minutes. Or just have a full on dance party for a while. I do that. It helps me to stay awake and stay somewhat happy.
- Take Breaks.If after ten minutes you need a break, take a small five minute break. Then work for 15 minutes then take another five minute break. It's important to take a breather. Because know if I don't, half the stuff i'm looking at just goes over my head. And also because I get distracted easily, so if I take breaks I get less distracted. Plus by working in increments you're building up tolerance kind of. I don't think that's the right word, but I think it gets the meaning across. It eases you into studying.
- Use colored pens, highlighters and post its. I'm one of those people who takes notes of my notes. So I love using post its and condensing my notes into big picture stuff so that before the Test i can glance at it and remember what I studied. And because you writing down important stuff on notes, you're interacting with the material so you'll remember it better! Highlighters help too, not just in making your notes pretty! I'm a big believer in highlighters. I use highlighters to show what themes, chapters, etc the material falls under.
- Focus on the big picture.When you're studying, don't try and re-learn everything. You're never going to finish this way. Now if you're like me, you probably skipped tip number one on this list ( I try not to but it's just so hard), in which case you need to focus on the big themes of whatever is is your learning. Try learning the why's and how's versus the little details. At the end, if you're cramming, or a responsible person who started studying on time, it's better to have an amazing understanding of the general ideas than know one itsy bit of information really well.
- Read the book.If you're class has a text book, I highly recommend reading it. I can't tell you how many times i've read things in the book and seen them on the test. So give it a read, take some notes. I know reading textbooks sucks, but it'll be worth it in the end. Now for you crammers out there, read the important parts, skim the rest.
- Have a snack or something to drink. Having some tea, or coffee, or some chips, or granola always makes me feel better when i'm studying. It just does. I don't know if this actually helps, but I feel like it helps me sooo thats why it's on the list. Whenever I start hardcore studying/cramming I always have coffee and as I reach the end I drink tea to calm me down. And in between that I snack a lot. This also goes for the day of the test. Have a good breakfast and snack through out the day to give your brain energy.
- Get a good night's rest.Look, cramming/studying into the wee hours of the night isn't going to help you. It's only going to make you tired. You need to go to sleep at you're normal bedtime. I do recommend studying before going to bed though, that way it's on your mind as you go to bed and you can remember it better the next day, But seriously, get a good night's sleep, you don't want to take the test and be so tired you make stupid mistakes. Plus you're brain works better when it's well rested.
- After you take it, relax, you know you did what you could. Freaking out and beating yourself after you take it isn't going to change anything. Just breath. Okay? You did what you could, did your best. You can only go up from here. So if you messed up and failed the test. It's okay. Alright? In the scheme of life how important is one test going to be? Just do better next time :) I know this parts hard, and it's taken me a while to learn to accept it, it's still hard for me. But hey, we can't all be good at everything all the time. So if you've got tests, quizzes, in class writing, twiz (test + quiz), whatever it is, good luck! Be awesome! Have faith in yourself :)