Why do I often forget what I have already studied? And why is it so difficult for me to prepare for an exam? It’s the million-dollar question for many students, and the answer is often technique. There are no magic formulas, but there are some recommendations that will make you more effective when studying.
- Plan: planning our study time is the first step to be effective. Make yourself a structured schedule, set deadlines and specific objectives for each subject. You should have a work plan, at least one week ahead. For the most part, your success or failure starts here, with good planning.
- Do not forget the objective: we study to achieve a goal, fulfill a dream, dedicate ourselves to what we like … But often, difficulties make us forget our goal and become discouraged. Always remember the final goal of your effort, beyond the day-to-day problems with the subjects you like least.
- Avoid procrastination: do not put off preparing the subjects that require a greater effort. We feel laziest because they requires us an extra effort, but they are also the ones that require more time and dedication. Plan to study the toughest subjects, such as mathematics or physics, at the time when you are most effective and efficient (usually at the beginning of the day).
- Don’t memorize: when the subject we study requires assimilating a large amount of information, we often try to memorize. The best option, instead, is to first do a quick reading of the topic to get a global vision. Then it’s time to do a close reading and underline the essentials (whether on paper or digital).
- Prepare your summary: the third step would be to create our own summary, which will help introduce the essential information into memory, and study it. The summary can take the form that is most effective for you: an outline, a concept map, a writing, etc.
- Use mnemonic tricks: sometimes there are lists or formulas that we cannot retain, but there are some tricks to do so. One is to create a story tied to the listing. Our brain, accustomed to stories from a young age, will not find it difficult to record them in memory. Other tricks are to form an acronym with the first letters of each point in the list, or to take the first letter of each word that we want to remember and use it to build a simple sentence.
- Examine yourself: when you think you have internalized the summary you have prepared, examine yourself: write or expose everything you know about the topic you just worked on. Review the result and pay special attention to everything that you have not internalized and that you will have to study again.
- Review: review what you have already studied within a week at most. If you have followed recommendation 1, you will have planned your study time, so you can plan these hours to refresh each topic weekly until you reach the exam day. The day before, it is essential to do a general review.
And one last particularly important recommendation: ask for help soon if you think you can’t handle a subject. Often, your own classmates can help you with certain subjects and, if necessary, you can seek professional reinforcement. At Academia Guiu we are backed by more than 125 years of experience in academic training, and we have verified the effectiveness of our private “à la carte” classes, carried out by specialized and experienced teachers in each subject. They can be in our academy, at home or private classes 100% online. The goal: to be effective in our study hours and learn to learn.