Tuesday, January 19, 2016

How To Study...No, Actually

Hello! I have seen post after post about study tips, (I am guilty as well). But none of them actually tell you HOW to study. Now, most people have their own method, but I have had some people tell me that they just don't know how to study. I feel like either people figure out how to study in high school, or they just never really quite find their own method. I'm going to do my best to lay out the ways that there are to study.

Everyone learns differently, but there are 4 basic types of learners:
1. Visual Learners: Learn best by seeing things explained down on paper. These guys learn math best by seeing the process done.
2. Auditory Learners: Learn best by having something explained to them. Make sure you go to class! You'll get the most information from the professor's lectures.
3. Reading/Writing Learners: Learn best by reading instructions, reading the explanation that the textbook provides, etc.
4. Kinesthetic Learners: Learn best by doing something themselves. Want to know how to put something together? Just sit down and try to do it.

Methods of studying:
1. Flash cards: Do you learn best by repetition? Flash cards are great for vocab words. I also use flash cards for stepped processes. I also used them as fact cards for the different disorders when I was taking abnormal psychology. When studying flashcards, put aside the ones you got correct and mix the ones you got incorrect back into the deck in your hand.

2. Mind Maps: These are a great ways of writing down all the details associated with something in no particular organization. I don't do mind maps because I'm a little too much of a perfectionist to do mind maps. However, I know that they can be very helpful for some people, especially on the topics that have a good chunk of detail.

3. Practice Problems: This was so important for me during all of my math classes in high school. I did practice problem after practice problem. Practice problems are pretty much best for STEM classes, however, they can be modified to other classes. For example, if you're going to have short or extended response questions on an exam, you could come up with a list of possible questions and practice what you would say to each question. If I remember correctly, we were given practice extended response questions in AP American History. If your professor doesn't give your practice problems, ask around. If another professor is teaching the same class, perhaps he gives out practice problems to his students. Also, look around on the Internet, many professors at other universities put their materials online.

4. Record Lectures: If you are an auditory learner, this is a great option. Record your professors lectures and then play them back and listen to them. Take extra note of things that were said that seem important. I've seen some people listen to their lectures while they're doing every-day things like cooking, or walking on the treadmill. If you're going to do this, make sure that you're listening to your recorded lectures while you are doing tasks that don't require a whole lot of thought. That way you can pay attention to the recording.

5. Talk about it: This one is again great for auditory learners. You get to take the information and kind of kick it around. Find a way to talk about it. Teach your cat about the nervous system. Talk to your roommate about the symptoms of schizophrenia. Get together with a group of classmates and discuss your material. If you're with a group of classmates, y'all can discuss any questions. Chances are that someone in the group knows the answer. 

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