PLAN TO STUDY AHEAD OF TIME
72% of students believe that cramming is the most effective way of studying. Hogwash! Regular people are only good at remembering the beginning and the end of lists; they forget everything in the middle. This is essentially what you are doing when you are cramming. Most likely, you are a regular person. The odds are not in your favor! Don’t cram!
TIP: The goal of studying is memory retention. Reviewing your notes within a day of creating them boosts your memory by a whopping 60%!
SLEEPING HABITS AFFECT YOUR AVERAGE GPA BY 9%
People who work their best at night get approximately 41 fewer minutes of sleep every night than those who work better in the morning or day. These types of workers are also more likely to pull all-nighters and sleep irregularly. This can cause stress and affect both short and long-term memory creation. Studies have shown that students who get less sleep can have averages up to 9% lower. These students average GPA was 2.84 compared to those who slept more who scored an average GPA of 3.18.
EAT APPROPRIATELY BEFORE YOU STUDY AND BEFORE TESTS
Coffee: Sure it’s okay to have. However, having too much will be like shooting yourself in the foot.
Fruit: Gives a glucose boost to your brain, keeping you alert and concentrated on the task at hand.
Omega-3’s: Fish has tons of omega-3’s, which are good for your brain because it helps to reduce memory loss. Plus it’s good for you to eat real food instead of processed fast food.
BE REALISTIC ABOUT HOW MUCH YOU WILL STUDY
Let us be real for a moment. Today’s society has a craving for instantaneous information. You sit on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and aimlessly scroll. What you intended to only be 30 seconds of scrolling on these social network platforms morphs into 30 minutes of time that you cannot account for. Do not set yourself up for failure. Remove all distractions from the vicinity when you are pounding the books. Yes, that includes your mobile device. Dedicate smaller intervals to studying and give yourself breaks. 30 – 50 minutes of studying with 10 – minute breaks are recommended.
EAT, STUDY, BREAK, STUDY, SLEEP, REPEAT
If you can study in a variety of ways (visually, verbally, kinesthetically, teaching someone else) you will maximize your experience with the core material. Sleeping between study sessions is recommended so that your brain can file away the information that you have just acquired. Sleeping allows our brains to take short-term memory and transfer that into long-term memory. Give yourself study breaks and eat healthy to stay alert.
TIP: If you must cram, urban legend has it that this method is most effective:
STUDY 30 MINUTES + SLEEP 20 MINUTES + STUDY 30 MINUTES + BREAK 20 MINUTES
Repeat for 5 hours. Sleep for 4 hours. Rinse and repeat.