Thursday, February 17, 2011

Studying habits

So, I haven't had time to sit down and think of a topic to write about this week because of two exams--and I'm actually holed up and studying right now. I think a brief break should be doubly helpful--my mind will get a rest, and I can now scrounge up a last-minute topic to blog about.

When you're in high school, you have a very consistent schedule of classes Mon-Fri, ~8-~3, then sports or club activities, work, homework, friends, etc., bed. In college, this won't always be the same. Classes fluctuate, and so do my plans for those days, but I always find time to sit down and study / finish homework. Granted, I don't have to do the homework or pass the test, but then I'd be paying WWU just so I could fail--I'd much rather get my money's worth, so I try to do as well as I can in my classes.

[If you're going to college on someone else's dime, be considerate; and if college just isn't your cup of tea, change coffeehouses!]

I've recently discovered how convenient it is to do homework and studying outside of your dorm room. You can easily remove some of the distractions in your dorm, such as Halo: Reach or Call of Duty: Black Ops, watching TV, browsing the internet, roommate, wanting to sleep, etc.

Of course, when I go to the study-cubby, I bring my laptop for music and internet--so I still have some distractions available--but in the different environment I can say slacking off becomes a little less tempting; and thus my work and studying gets accomplished.

One of my floormates says when he has a project or essay to finish, he locks himself in one of the small study rooms (that used to be typing rooms, back when typewriters were the norm), and just goes to town on it. Of course, without windows he never knew what time it was when he would finally emerge. 

My roommate also has a pretty cool way to study: he tweets. He'll start going through his readings, and tweet a random fact or example he's having trouble remembering. It's one way to have your mind connect something it is learning to a few actions (like reading, typing, and writing), so it can be recalled in different ways. At the moment I am doing the same thing on my Tumblr account.

When studying for a big exam, remember that last-minute cramming can be detrimental to how you perform the next day. Instead, skim over your notes at least a week before your exam, and little by little it will be committed to your memory. Also, I learned from psych class that you should have the same amount of sleep and caffeine in your system as you would a normal class of learning and lectures. (Subtle things about how things are processed in your mind; it's a fun class).

I think this is the proper length of a post (and break session), so now I will resume studying. Now, all I have to do is stay up until at least 1 a.m., wake up at my normal hour, and not caffeinate myself until after my class--just like any normal day. Everything works out eventually.

No comments:

Post a Comment