How to STUDY Effectively
Wednesday 5th May 2021
How to study effectively has to be one of the most salient aspects of school life, especially during exam time. The best advice is to spend at least the SAME amount of time reviewing your answers that you do answering the questions. Reviewing your work like this allows you to cement your understanding of 'What Went Well' (WWW) and even more importantly, engage with 'Even Better If' (EBI). I know there's the temptation to just look at the mark and feel elated if you've done well and deflated if you've fallen short of your target grade, but engaging with your teacher's advice has to be your starting point. Review your achievement. Ask yourself, 'What do I need to do to improve?'
When you're studying privately, first things first: ditch the digital distractions! Don't multi-task! Focus on one thing at a time for effective study. The attention span of a 16-year-old, on average, is around 32 - 38 minutes. It's a case of little and OFTEN. It's wise to take sensibly timed breaks. You really want to be as productive as possible during this valuable window of concentration, so make Instagram, YouTube or Facebook your reward for working productively. You can message your friends when you know that you've put the right amount of energy and focus into being the student that you really want to be.
Effective study means engaging in active learning (not just re-reading notes). Active learning builds understanding. Start by paraphrasing your learning. Can you coherently explain the concept to someone who knows nothing about the topic? This may well be your parents or siblings, so use them! Write a study guide by topic. Formulate questions and problems and compose complete answers. Create a concept map or diagram which explains the material. Quiz yourself. Make flashcards and use these to review topics in subsequent study sessions. Take note of the ones which you find tricky and review these more often. Consider the different type of questions that you'll be expected to answer. Read exemplars. Test yourself. Write your response in timed conditions and afterwards review exactly what you can do by yourself. This will help you to pinpoint what you actually know and what you still need to spend time getting to know. Every time a memory is retrieved, that memory becomes more accessible in the future.
Remember, effective study means reviewing work, ditching distractions, spacing practice and actively engaging in learning strategies.
You're not alone - Achievers Tutoring are experts when it comes to active learning. If you need a push in the right direction, we're here for you. Give your parents a nudge to get in touch with Dennis who can find just the right tutor for your needs. Everyone needs that extra bit of support from time to time, right? Together, we've got this!
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