Study Methods That Work

I have compiled a list of top 9 study techniques that work. Whether you are currently preparing for an exam or not, take a look at some of these exciting tips.


Take notes from the textbook

Keep in mind that the main purpose of notes is to summarize the information so that you don't have to read the entire textbook when you want to study.

However this can be an effective study technique if you're reading actively, so, summarize the information and put it in your own words, analyze the concepts, identify key ideas and make connections between topics. These are all examples of active reading.

Reorganize your class notes

Class notes tend to be rushed and all the information is written together in a big jumble. You can restructure this information in a logical order, or put it into charts and diagrams. This will help you identify what is important, organize the information in your head and make connections between the information and the topic.

It's also a great way to make your notes easier to understand for when you're studying later.

Go through previous exam papers

Go through all past exam papers that you hopefully have organized somewhere and check the wrong answers that you got. This way, you can review the material by looking over it, and you can focus on fixing the mistakes that you made before.

Make a study guide

With a study guide, you'll be looking over all of the material, and you identify what's important. This also helps you connect topics to each other and connect information within a topic.

Looking over the material isn't quite as effective as active learning techniques, continue reading for more.

Use flashcards

This is considered active learning because you're practicing remembering the information, because that's what you're going to be doing on tests. You'll be prompted to remember the information. 

Use repetition

Research shows that we tend to forget information in certain increments of time as shown in this curve of forgetting, so, in order to cement the information into your long-term memory, you'll want to study the information at certain intervals and continually repeat.

Do practice exam papers

Actually completing an exam paper encourages you to put what you've learnt into practice. We recommend doing this atleast a couple of days before your actual exam so that you have enough time to review and correct mistakes.

Revise with friends

Everyone should write their own questions and then each person gets a chance to ask their questions. This way you speak about the questions at hand and you might learn something you didn't pick up yourself.

It's also a lot more fun to work with friends. Just be careful of procrastinating and wasting time.

Teach other people, also known as the feynman technique

This study method helps you identify what you don't know because the other person will be asking questions. You also have to really organize the information into a lesson structure, and you have to truly understand the information in order to teach another person, especially if they don't understand it as well as you do.

It's best to teach an actual person since they can ask you questions back, but if you don't have anyone available, you can always make a fake lesson and teach it to your pillow, or a wall.

You may also like >> Matric Study Tips: Past Papers

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