How not to be too stressed during a test, an exam, or just when you have a lot of tasks to do? Regarding the number of students failing on their exams, or writing their essays late at night, it seems that the last subject taught in the academic program is "Learning how to learn." Yet, that can be learned. Some students discover their ideal method of learning before the others do, but with a little help and perseverance, everyone can do it. Anyone can apply these learning methods and improve their study performance.
Re-Boost Your Motivation
Learning requires, first of all, motivation. Do you want to study indeed? Does this desire come from you? From people around you? Why did you choose your major? What are your goals? Why do you need to finish this assignment? What do you want to learn? And how long? By devoting how much energy? There are many questions that make you progress and decrease your stress as much as help you regain some control over your studies. Nothing helps as much as success! Take a few things, do everything in the right order. And you will gain confidence in yourself, a new desire to go further! You may also find some motivational posts on our blog.
Remember the Material Discussed in Class
Do not wait the day before the exams or some special assignment to open your textbook! The same evening, at home, open it again. Revise the material you had during the classes. Remember what the professor said and which points he/she highlighted. Possibly take some quick notes. Why not make a summary as a mind map? What can help you to give the structure of this material in your mind?
Reactivate Your Memory
The secret of memorization is understanding, then repeating: it is not a matter of learning by heart, but of understanding, creating links between the elements as the parts of the class material, between the different classes. Try mind-mapping, redoing some exercises, writing essays regardless of whether you have an assignment, defining a few questions to ask your professor: there are so many ways to reactivate your memory!
Use Your Knowledge in Your Real Life
You have remembered a certain amount of information. It is time to go further: to transform it into the applicable knowledge! That is to fully understand the material, relate it to what you already know. Activate those areas of the brain that will allow you to answer questions, write assignments and present what you know in your words. This way you can reorganize your knowledge. For that, do not just re-read again and again. Use your material while playing, writing an essay from your assignment with some hand-made flashcards or with the software ones. The software and phone applications are based on the principle of spaced repetitions. By asking questions, exploring other versions of the same information on the Internet or in a book, explaining to someone else how it works, you will become a successful student.
When you learn new things, your brain creates new connections. It connects your new concepts to those that you already know. But, for these connections to stabilize and become truly engraved in your long-term memory, your brain needs about three months. This is the time it takes to consolidate new achievements. So, schedule your study sessions early enough to learn what you will need in the future in a long term. Change the task for your brain: repeat the exercises, vary the points of view, read your notes, recreate your mind maps, re-explain to your best friend the most difficult details. And enjoy learning!