Up until now, I mainly based this blog on the premises of my own experiences and endeavors. I still believe in the value of this storytelling, and I also recognize the need for scientific proof. The fact is, I’m not the most credible source in the world. However, what I’m very good at is research. Using research, I will go into depth about a self-improvement topic to help make your life easier and more enjoyable. For today, we will review the best ways to study and how to implement them into your daily life.
Dangers Of All-Nighters
I’m sure the masochist in all of us has pulled an all-nighter before a test once or twice in their life. However, this has been proven to be really ineffective. Your attention span decreases. You become insatiable, unable to control yourself at times. In addition, it disrupts hormone balances in our bloodstream. Indeed, there are better ways to study than to deprive ourselves of our favorite part of the day: sleep. Well, my dearest reader, research says there is.
Alternative to All-Nighters
Did you know that studying the most challenging topic on your exam the night before the exam can actually help quite a bit? Crazy, I know. However, it works. Apparently, we do not remember information significantly if we pull out nighters. However, if we simply review the information before falling asleep, our brain registers our needed information to a more professional standard. I.e., we tend to process information better during this specific time.
Practice Tests and Having Fun
Research has quickly shown the absolute dominance of practice tests as a preferred studying method. However, this method can be lengthy, so I’m, of course, only recommending it to my fellow Asian students. Jokes aside, it is highly effective. Simply being able to rationalize the information we’ve learned and apply it to a test format is a valuable skill in and of itself. Combining this with each practice test’s data helps us know that we have a systematically impossible way to fail. However, you can still fail if you do practice tests; if you do, I have no sympathy for you. Kidding, of course, or am I?
Moving on, what’s arguably a better technique than the previously mentioned is having fun with your studying.
“Maverick, how the hell do I make studying fun?”You, probably
That’s a great question. Fortunately for us, it’s quickly answered. Games like HeadsUp!, Booklet, Quizlet Live, and Kahoot can help you learn the material better. Why is this? Perhaps it’s our insane need for competition. Is our love for what we find fun dominant to simple busy work? Maybe it’s both. There might even be more reasons out there. What I know for sure, however, is that it works.
Our environment impacts us whether we think it or not. Think about it; whenever you go to your room late at night and see your clothes smeared everywhere with dirt pouring into every crevice of the room, you feel bad at first. You feel unmotivated, mopey, and unwilling to move.
Now picture yourself in the same room, which is pristine and clean. Everything is shining as the color reflects off of it in a beautiful light shade as you walk along the clean floors of your room. This feels invigorating, relaxing, and almost beautiful in a sense. Studies support this allegory. It’s shown that light, color, and comfortability can all significantly impact our studying.
Study In Small Bursts
Study ahead of time in small bursts. As a fellow adrenaline junkie, I get it. That feeling of pure adrenaline as you study last second or write an essay the hour before it’s due can be invigorating. However, it’s not that effective. While learning complex concepts the night before a test can help, trying to cram all the information in is highly ineffective for most and not worth the lack of sleep for others.
Honestly, just take a little time to review your topics for five minutes daily. If you literally don’t have the time for it, just check it while you brush your teeth. Sacrifice a bit of your free time for it. It’s easy to manage so long as you’re not an adrenaline junkie like me. If you are, sorry, but work sometimes takes priority over our enjoyment. Even though work should be fun, we must prioritize pure work at times for our specific goals.
Set a goal hierarchy. It’s essential to not only make goals for our studying but also to identify the relative importance of each goal towards our topics. For example, if your math test were due in the next week, you’d be better off working on that rather than a test you have in a month. This is common knowledge.
What’s not common knowledge is that goals should be placed within a pyramid. Allow me to explain. Say you want to get better at math. Your main goal would thus be “Get Better at Math.”
Then, divide this goal into several subsections. These subsections were “Get Better at Geometry” or “Master Factoring.”
Finally, place one more subsection, including several more sections connected to the abovementioned subsections. These should be concrete goals. For example, they can be “Study 30 minutes a day with practice tests on factoring”. Another example could be “Read ten minutes every other day to improve writing.”. Research shows that deliberately splitting our goals into this type of framework helps us feel more accomplished, as each small act we do enables us to get closer to our ultimate goal.
Study something you like
Study something meaningful. This one can’t always be applied, especially to students in the corrupted K-12 schooling regimen, which I won’t discuss today. However, it is vital for extracurriculars and other activities that help to make you stand out. Don’t, and I mean don’t, do an activity just because it builds more credit towards your college or job application. Prestigious organizations hate suck-ups; plus, they see thousands daily. Who’s to say you’re any better than the other beggars?
When discussing topics such as a research paper, a blog, wink, wink, or a podcast, don’t ask yourself what colleges are looking for. Instead, ask yourself; what do you want to study? Research supports these ideas by stating that people more interested in their topics tend to put significantly more time, energy, and effort into them.
Finally, come in with a positive attitude. Let’s discuss the benefits of not seeing studying as a terrible activity. For one, your mood can majorly affect the ability to which your mental fatigue and effort build-up. Going into studying in a bad mood can significantly impact our results from the beginning. Why hinder yourself if it is unnecessary?
Furthermore, research shows that depending on our mood, our quality of work may be affected if emotional discourse is active. My point states that even though studying can be arduous at times, it may be beneficial to approach it less harshly. Don’t see it as an obstacle but as a resource, you can use to further educate yourself.
Overall, there are so many different ways to study that I haven’t even begun discussing. If I did, this blog would be 50,000 words long, signed by fifteen doctorates, and proofread by top-ranking linguistics. Unfortunately for us, I don’t necessarily have these types of faculties at hand. So, the tips I’m giving out, for now, are enough, I hope, to keep you all happy for now. Bye for now, friends, and see you next time on Scientific Sunday.