5 Study Hacks Every Student Must Know

by Janani

Every student has his or her own way of preparing for exams. Some burn the midnight oil while others wake before dawn. Some study to the sound of music while others prefer pin-drop silence. Whatever your method of preparation may be, these five hacks are sure to make studying a whole lot easier.

1. Flashcards

Flashcards are pocket-sized pieces of paper that can hold anything between a few words to a small paragraph of information. Having to memorise definitions is probably the bane of every student’s existence. But with the help of flashcards, you can have all your definitions in one place and in a convenient format. The most common way to use flashcards is to write the word you want to define on one side and its definition on the other.

Remember, flashcards are not cheat sheets! Do not carry them into your examination hall, or the examiner will have you suspended in a flash!

2. Mind Maps

A mind map is an excellent tool to retain information in your memory especially if you’re a visual learner. A good mind map generally answers the four questions of ‘What’, ‘Why’, ‘How’ and ‘When’ about any given topic. When you create a colourful mind map of your own, you have a much better chance of retaining the information for longer periods.

You can draw mind maps the old-school way by hand, but if you want to create digital ones for free mind mapping websites among other great sites for students, then click here.

3. Add Some Colour

It’s natural for you to yawn as soon as you crack your textbook open if it’s bland and colourless. That much-needed pop of colour to grab your attention can be done by using sticky notes and highlighters. Your brain will naturally be drawn to the bright sticky note, absorbing whatever information is written on it. Another good way to keep your mind from wandering off the page is to use different coloured highlighters for definitions, dates, etc.

Did you know? The most popular brand of reusable sticky notes, Post-it®, has been selling these ingenious and accidental inventions for more than three decades now.

4. The Ideal Font

For those who type their notes rather than write them, the best font to use is Times New Roman. This font is the easiest and fastest to read. The reasons behind this are the familiarity and simplicity of the font. Whereas a complex, fancy font like Monotype Corsiva will take much longer to read. Choosing the right font can save you a lot of time and effort if you are studying from printed notes.

The font size preference tends to vary from one person to another, but the general recommendation is 14pt.

1. The Best Study Hack of All…

Every student is at their best learning capacity when their environment is free from distractions. What is the biggest source of distraction for students these days? We all know the answer, don’t we? Undoubtedly the biggest cause of distraction are smartphones. If your device keeps pinging with Facebook notifications every few minutes, you will keep feeding into the temptation to check your phone again and again. This will disrupt your focus and a simple concept that should take 5 minutes to learn will now take 20 minutes instead.

The solution is as simple as turning off notifications or even turning off your phone itself while you study. You also have the option to use apps that are designed to block specific highly distracting websites for a temporary period of time. Self Control is one such app. It’s available for free on Android devices. If you’re an iOS user, try a free app called Freedom that serves the same purpose.

Image Source: Google Images

Also published on Medium.

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