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Blog , College Life

Best 11 Tips for Studying as a College Student

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Written by Sky Hughes

Studying for college homework and exams can be hard. Especially if you are an avid procrastinator! Have you ever had this problem? You are sitting at your laptop trying to study but you get distracted by your phone, surroundings, or other students? Or maybe all of your friends are doing awesome things such as cliff jumping, going to the lake, or even hanging out with your favorite professors? Well, here are 11 tips that will help you study like the productive person of society that you are!  

1. Block off Study Times

One tip that really helped me when I was learning to study well in school was blocking out designated study times. Making a visual schedule helps with this. This will help you know not to schedule anything over your study time and prioritize your work so you can have fun activities with your friends after!  

2. Change your Surroundings

Changing your surroundings can be such a refreshing way to stay focused during your study hours! Our brains automatically look at other people and things happening around it to determine how to act. This can sometimes cause us to lose focus on the task at hand when others are being loud, making noises, or just making slight movement next to us. This also happens when we are alone studying as well. No matter what the issue, a change in environment is needed! Whether that is moving to the opposite side of the room or relocating to another location entirely. Go to a coffee shop! Study with a friend who will keep you accountable! Just mix up that surrounding however you can! See places to go around BGU that would be perfect for this tip here.  

3. Study with Friends

Studying with friends can either be a blessing, or a curse. This tip is heavily determined on the amount of focus and determination you personally have. Studying with friends can be very beneficial if you have friends who can focus on their work and be an encouragement to you and your work. I remember when I was in my first semester of freshman year I had a great group of sophomores who were amazing to study with! They all encouraged me so much in my homework and even helped me to take healthy breaks. On the other side of this scale, I also had friends that I absolutely could NOT study with! We talked and joked around way too much to actually get work done. That being said, choose your study friends carefully!  

4. Prioritize your work

This is such an important step! Along with scheduling your study times, it’s important to know exactly what you want to do. Learning to prioritize what assignments to study for and what papers to write will help your study session in the long run. Something I like to do personally is look at the percentage of my grade that the assignment is worth. The larger the percentage the higher it is on my list of To-Do’s. Now, that is not the only way to prioritize but it is very effective. Some people also like to either do their small assignments first or their larger assignments first. This means more the length of time it will take versus the percentage of the assignment.

5. Learn to say No!

Saying no to fun activities can be VERY hard! But as a college student, it is something you must do. This tip goes very well with prioritizing your work. One thing you can do is remind yourself why you are in school in the first place. If the answer is to make friends and do fun things then okay, do that. If the answer is to get your degree and have a stable future, then you should definitely be studying! Say No! This is why you now have a blocked off time for studying! This does not mean you can’t have fun with your friends at all! Just be smart about your time management and know your priorities. Try blocking off time for activities with you friends as well!  

6. Take Breaks

I can not stress this tip enough! Take Breaks! Some people may think that this is procrastination in and of itself, but taking breaks can be very beneficial to our brains and our study times. I know we have talked about scheduling a lot in this list but it is important! Depending on the assignment here are some suggestions:
  • Study for an hour, break for 15 mins.
  • Study for 30 mins, break for 5 mins.
  • Study for 40 mins, break for 10 mins.
These are just suggested times but feel free to find your own groove! One app that is helpful is the Flora app! It helps to prioritize your time and has scheduled breaks within.

7. Reward Yourself

Rewarding yourself can look like so many different things! This can include: taking breaks, getting your favorite snack, having a small conversation with a friend, and so much more. Find things that motivate you! One thing I like to reward myself with is walking down to the local ice cream shop when it’s open after a long study session. Rewarding your hard work will motivate you even more in the study process to get everything finished and turned in. Keep up the great work! You can do this!  

8. Do not Cram!

We’ve all been there. You have procrastinated all week and now you have a huge quiz due tonight and have not studied AT ALL. Don’t do this to yourself! Cramming just stresses us out and causes us to make bad decisions regarding time and even taking the quiz in the first place! Instead, try doing your assignments little by little. You can work on multiple assignments throughout the week and not finish one assignment in one sitting! Do NOT Cram!  

9. Identify your Study Weaknesses

Let’s think about this. Are there specific things that keep you from studying? Procrastination? Your phone? Other people? It’s important to identify and rectify these weaknesses if you want to fix them. Two things that are a weakness for me while studying are procrastination and my phone. If these are your weaknesses then you know that those weaknesses together are NOT a recipe for a great study session! The steps I take for these are simple. I have a screen time lock on my phone that will lock all of the apps that I choose after I have been on them for a certain amount of time per day. You could still unlock them if you wanted but it gives me that mental block to know that I would have to go through the process of unlocking the apps every time I wanted to use them. I highly recommend this! Also, I have a wonderful group of friends that encourage and even scold me if I start to slack too much. Identify and Rectify!

10. Unplug from your Phone

As mentioned in the last tip, I personally have a problem with playing on my phone instead of studying. While locking your apps is a good idea, it does not always do the trick. More times than not I have to have my phone out of my view. Out of sight, out of mind! Even if you listen to music on your phone to help you focus, it is still a good idea to have it out of reach and hidden from your view. If this is still a problem area then consider letting a friend hold onto your phone for you! This may not be plausible if you leave your campus alone but if you are studying with friends then this is a perfect solution that I have found helpful!

11. Ask for Help!

I do not say this lightly! If you are struggling find someone willing to actually keep you accountable and will help come up with solutions! Sometime all you need is another brain to bounce ideas off of. Never put your pride over your future! And that wraps up my tips for studying in college! I hope these tips help you in your college journey! Remember that you are doing amazing and I pray you do well on your endeavors!
“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all for the glory of God” – 1 Corinthians 10:31

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