Let’s be real, solely passing the final is the main goal for the majority of students. What if you can find a way to study faster, better, and achieve higher grades? Read this article to discover your right study approach.
1) Discover your way of memorization
You need to identify what way makes it easier for you to retain information. Looking back at your past exams and personal memories do you retain information better through visual, auditory, or sensory memory?
Visual thinker: Take notes with colors and highlight the important lines in your textbook with colorful highlighters. Here it helps to color code i.e. yellow = important terms, blue = authors, green = unknown terms. Also, doodling next to a paragraph can be very helpful i.e. you have a list of 5 terms you need to memorize. Either doodle these 5 terms individually or make a pie chart where those 5 terms complete one pie chart, representing a theory. The classic, rewriting your notes or lecture notes is also very beneficial, people tend to remember information from their handwriting subconsciously better.
Auditive thinker: When possible, record the lecture and listen to recording before the final. Should you not be allowed to record your lecturer, speak your notes out loud while studying, even feel free to record yourself. I am aware that may be weird but it can save time, especially, if you feel like going over your notes at the gym or while commuting.
2) Focus on topics/terms you don’t understand first
It is easy to study first the topics you comprehend but focusing on what you are not good at allows you to research and practice more. This can in return motivate you subconsciously i.e. ”I understand the finance equation, now it will be easier to understand the rest and it won’t get anymore difficult”.
3) Divide to conquer
There will be a time you have multiple finals in a week, a time you have to study endless legislations or a time where you simply have to cram. The best way is to study in portions, divide the chapters you have to learn into days you have until the final i.e. you have to study 15 chapters but only have 5 days until the final, thus you will study 3 chapters per day until the final. When it comes to multiples finals, study for the hardest final first or the subject you enjoy the least.
4) Study with peers
If you prefer studying in groups, ask your friends or join a study group and help each other out. By studying with peers you may even find someone who has finals from previous year groups. This way you can get a feeling of how your lecturer formulates exam questions, what topics were asked in every year group and how your final may be potentially graded.
5) Look for another lecturer
Ask YouTube – should you struggle to understand a topic/an equation. You could also run out of time to read a textbook or you simply got confused by all the different answers. Throughout university, I had two lecturers who were terrible at teaching so I turned to YouTube. Nowadays, a lot of great institutions, including Ivy League universities, provide lectures online for free. A Harvard lecturer taught me economics and I ended up loving the subject and acing that final, before almost repeating the whole year (At my alma mater when you fail the same final twice and don’t pass the next time, you have to repeat the entire year, regardless of the grades in your other subjects.).
There are plenty of resources online for free and anyone can get easily overwhelmed by all the information available, especially if one is already confused to begin with. By turning to a lecturer online you can expand your horizon and simultaneously you can save time, by not having to read multiple textbooks in the library.
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