How-To Optimize Studying


This mindmap is a graphic which lays out the ways to study that are included in the article.

For any student, especially at the Benjamin School, it is crucial to know how to study well and efficiently. Assessments are a large part of class grading and without studying, it would be extremely difficult to succeed. Here are several ways to update your study sessions and increase your productivity.

The first technique that can be used to study is the Pomodoro Technique. In this process, the student is supposed to focus on one task for 25 minutes and then take a 5 minute break. After this, one goes back to another 25 minutes of studying the same topic. Then, another 5-minute break occurs, this process should happen four times. After those chunks of time dedicated to studying the student is supposed to take a longer break, lasting 30 minutes. This process should be repeated for as long as needed by following the exact steps each time.

The Feynman technique can also be used for in-depth explanations and clear understandings of topics that need to be reviewed or studied. Involved in this method is reading the material and then writing down how you would explain it to a friend or anyone else. This explanation of the topic should be very simple and easy to understand. After writing this down, it should be reviewed and corrected in any parts where the information is even partially wrong. This process can be used in an extremely positive way for a further understanding on any type of topic. It can be used with math problems, literary issues, historical events, and endless other subjects.

For any subject with a text or book involved, a simple way to have a deeper comprehension is just highlighting and annotating the words that are read. As one is reading, they should be looking for any key terms that would be crucial to know for a following assessment or assignment. Using different colors triggers different parts of the brain to remember specific facts and words that go along with certain concepts. 

Another easy way to be better at studying is to just move around. Let’s say you need to study for spanish, math, and history. For Spanish, you may want to stay at your desk and learn there. When it’s time to go to math, you should move to any other place, this can be a different corner of your room, a different part of the house, or a completely different location. This should be repeated for history or any other classes that you have work for.

One study tactic that takes a little more work is mind mapping. This can be done online or on a physical piece of paper. This skill is very important for any type of person who learns by seeing things physically and clearly written out. On a piece of paper, you start by drawing a medium sized circle in the center of the paper. You write the main topic of whatever you are studying is inside of that circle. Next, draw a few lines from the outside of the circle to new smaller circles. On the inside of these circles should be subheadings or smaller topics within that main category. repeat the circle and line drawings until you have all of the information that you need on the piece of paper. By the end, you should be able to see the most important information of the topic. 

A very common and useful way to study is to make up practice tests. These tests can be made by the student, the teacher, a parent, or even the internet. Taking a practice test can not only make you realize what you do not know about a subject, it also prepares you for the actual exam or assignment that is on its way. For people who are not good at time management during tests, this is a great way to study. 

It is crucial that before an assessment, the studying is not started the night before or even the day of the test. Studying in order to fully understand something must be done for several days or even weeks before the assessment. This gives you time to either see a teacher or talk to friends about what you do not understand and how you can improve your knowledge.

Using a calendar or even just a list will go a very long way in completing homework. When you first sit down to get work done, you should take a piece of paper and a pen or pencil and go through each class and write down every single assignment that you have to get done. Even if you think you will remember everything that you have to get done, writing it down will guarantee that nothing will be forgotten or left out.