The UOM Academic Year went off to a start last Friday, and lectures have started already, and not only is it challenging to keep up with your grades amid, you know, a pandemic (thanks Rona!) … but for most students, nearly everything is online too.
So, clearly with everything going on in the world right now, it’s pretty easy to lose focus…so here’s a few tips to help you out!
1. Organise Yourself and Invest in A Planner
One thing I have come to learn after many years of studying, is that organisation plays a MAJOR role – not just in your studies, but in your space too. Think of it like this, if your room (or wherever it is that you choose to study) is a mess, then your mind will also be a mess and it will decrease your productivity.
It can also lead you to feel a little bit “all-over the place”, so to speak, but investing in a planner – be it physical or digital – can help you map out your entire schedule.
2. Print out any provided PowerPoints or Notes
And more importantly, READ THEM!
Some lecturers and professors are kind enough to provide their students with notes, readings, or basically all of the important information collected in a PowerPoint. Whilst some students choose to overlook these, they can actually be insightful, help you understand certain things more, and overall help enrich your own notes and arguments.
Some sectors of studying require memory work, and the key for that is repetition. Repetition helps you figure out what information you can already remember easily, and what you need to work a little more on – and that’s where flashcards come in. Flashcards are great for memory work and they also help you in self-assessing yourself!
4. Listen to Soft Music When Studying
Whether it’s classical piano, smooth jazz or a random Lo-Fi remix, background music can actually help you increase your focus – especially if it’s instrumental. Some white noise is always welcome, or even Bay, or Bay Easy, or Bay Retro – the list is endless!
Colour-coding your notes is a dynamic way to organise the information right in front of you, allowing you to rapidly review the most important information (which comes in really handy for revision).
Plus, using bright colours will capture your attention, thus relieving boredom, and is primarily great for visual learners.
6. Don’t Ignore the Syllabus
Checking up on the annual or biannual syllabus will help you pinpoint what mode of assessment the lecturer will use, helps you get to know what the study unit entails, and more importantly, what will be expected from you as a student.
7. Study Groups
Never underestimate the power of study groups, primarily during exam season. Having a study group gives you the opportunity to discuss your study units with fellow classmates and friends, which in return will help you memorise more, understand certain things better, and it also takes some of the stress away.
Plus, it’s great motivation!
8. Talk to Yourself
Okay, let’s admit it, EVERYONE talks to themselves! Reading your notes aloud or pretending you’re the one teaching the material helps you thoroughly understand what it is that you’re actually reading, because when you’re speaking about it, and not just blankly reading over it, you’re making sense of it.