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How to Improve Your Study Skills

Three Parts:Creating the ideal study spaceMaking it easier on yourselfDeveloping good study habits

There are many ways to prepare for a test or to do an assignment. Good study habits are a must for anyone who wishes to achieve great success in their courses.

Part 1
Creating the ideal study space

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    Create an appropriate study environment. You will need limited noise, a lot of sunlight, a tidy surface, and comfortable furniture. Find a quiet place to study where you won't be bothered. This is very important and should be given great care in doing.
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    Get everything you need before you sit down to study. Pencils, pens, notebooks, college ruled paper, textbooks, etc.
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    Avoid distractions. If you have family members that distract you, politely ask them to leave so you can continue with your assignments. If you have kids, this might not be possible. Make sure the TV and radio are off. If you need background noise, classical music might be of interest.

Part 2
Making it easier on yourself

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    Develop a calm attitude. Be calm and patient with yourself. Nobody learns anything straight away.
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    Make sure you get enough sleep. Staying up late studying is not a good idea. Lack of sleep prevents you from concentrating and reduces your ability to remember what you have learned [1].
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    Develop a schedule. All students should keep a schedule of classes, assignments and other key dates. As part of that schedule, they should set aside specific time for studying and project work. That way, they're less likely to find themselves scrambling to complete a project at the last minute or cramming the night before a big test. The schedule should also set aside time for non-school activities like sports. In fact, the more comprehensive the schedule, the more efficient most students will be in completing their schoolwork.
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    Take notes in any classes that you have. You can even take notes at work. It may be easier to use abbreviations for common words, only record important information (and/or key words), use clear headers to organize information and use pictures/diagrams to demonstrate. Highlight or underline key points in your material.
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    Develop a study group. This way you can quiz each other and learn things from each other.
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    Take frequent breaks. Go for a walk, ride your bike, or be with family. When you take frequent breaks, you find that you aren't boggled with the stress of homework and you can't wait to get back to your assignments later.Hear music it helps your brain to relax

Part 3
Developing good study habits

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    Start with the homework that is hardest to you. For example, if you're taking chemistry, math, English, and Spanish. Start with Chemistry and end with English. If you start with the hardest subject, your brain will be fresh.
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    Develop effective memorization techniques - You can use lists when having to memorize several things eg. (formulae). Flash cards are good for memorizing large amounts of grouped information.
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    Develop critical reading skills. As students move into higher grades, they're assigned larger and more complex reading assignments. Poor reading skills or an inability to read for important information will make these assignments a burden and undermine overall academic success. Students need to deliberately learn to read for key information. If reading skills are weak, it's important for the student to seek help improving them; otherwise performance in many subjects would be impacted.
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    Focus on the areas that require the most attention. Study things more if you have a hard time doing them.
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    Improve test-taking strategies. A poor test result doesn't always mean that the student doesn't have a good grasp of the academic material or skill gaps. It's possible that the student understands the material, but doesn't take tests well. An effective test-taking strategy includes: learning how to prioritize material when studying for a test; preparing for a test over a number of days and not just the night before; coping with stress during the test; and managing time during a test so that all sections or areas are completed.
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    Ask yourself questions. Asking questions should lead to emphasis on the what, why, how, when, who and where of study content. Ask yourself questions while you read or study. Answering them will help to make sense of the material, and aid you in remembering it, because the process will make an impression on you. Those things that make impressions are more meaningful, and therefore more easily remembered.
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    Get help. When you don't know what to do when you have to study for something. Don't give up––go and talk to someone about it; don't just keep it to yourself.


  • Eat an hour before you sit down to study. Your brain cannot work effectively while you are hungry.
  • Get out the notes you need. It will be nice to write the notes, but reading, reflecting, or building on the notes really helps when you need it most.
  • Do your homework before extra curricular activities.
  • When working in groups, don't get distracted.
  • Stretching during your breaks might help give your body and/or mind a boost of energy.
  • The easiest things to learn are things that you are interested in. Become interested in the things that you struggle most with.
  • Repeated reading improves your retention power.
  • Remember to close your door so that you don't get distracted by noise anywhere else in the area.
  • Take studying seriously, but remember to take frequent breaks especially if you get stressed. For each one hour of studying, take approximately 5-10 minutes break.
  • When in your room, do not lay down and study. You may find yourself dozing off and not getting any work done.
  • Mint or spearmint gum might help refresh your mind.[citation needed]
  • Watch Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide with the episode titled "Tests".


  • If you get eye strain and headaches, put away the homework for a while and do something else.
  • Remember not to wait until the last minute! However, cramming the night before (having also studied before) is a good way to memorize and make sure you know everything thoroughly.

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