Students can improve their memory and achieve higher academic marks by following these simple studying techniques.
Many students believe that, in order to retain information and important concepts while studying, they must read their text repetitiously. This fallacy has been proven to be untrue by many academic research studies done on the topic of memory. In fact, in order to accurately remember what you are reading, you must first understand exactly what message the author is trying to convey as well as link these messages to material and information that you already know. There are many effective studying techniques that can greatly improve your memory and help you achieve higher academic marks.
Location, Location, Location
First and foremost, where you study is detrimental to your ability to concentrate. Pick a quiet place, away from distractions such as the television or a campus cafeteria. Choose the library or a quiet room in your home.
Connect with the Information
The next step is to engage in active learning. Instead of simply reading the material and hoping that it sinks in, take on a different approach. Active learning involves many techniques. Before you read a chapter in your book, look over it, read the outline at the front of the chapter, and then read the summary at the end of the chapter. This will give you a superior idea of the information you will be processing.
Next, while you read the chapter thoroughly, make side notes about the information and concepts that are important, such as terms that are bolded in the text. A helpful hint is to formulate questions about significant terms in your book so you can go back, after you finish reading, and try to answer them. You may also to want to create associations to these terms. This involves relating the meaning of the terms to something you are familiar with, such as the term loyalty to perhaps your favorite pet. It is also helpful to draw small diagrams or pictures beside your notes, which aids in your ability to remember difficult concepts.
Go Over the Material
Review your notes until you are able to memorize the information. Another helpful tip is to make flashcards out of index cards. Write the term on one side of the card and the terms definition on the other. Study these cards repeatedly. Allow a friend or family member to review the flashcards with you. They can read the term and ask you to define them. Then have them read the definition and you can guess the term. By utilizing all of these studying techniques, your grades will improve significantly, as will your ability to remember other literature not pertaining to your studies.