Most students have been taught that the only way to truly study is by locking themselves in rooms and cramming huge chunks of information for hours until they have mastered the content. However, recent research shows that there are study methods that are more effective at enhancing memory recall, both in the short and long terms. From adequate planning to alternating study locations, here are some simple strategies that you can use to enhance learning and retention of material.
Create and Use Mnemonics
The use of mnemonics is not new to academic. These are devices that help students to memorize key concepts, formulas, definitions, and key concepts. The fun tools can help students to remember word sequences, face, facts, and events. Mnemonics offer a way for students to improve their intellectual development. The process essentially entails connection unfamiliar content with familiar and already known information through the use of letter/word or visual picture combination. When you use the strategy, you reduce confusion among similar items, and improve long-term retention.
Here are some types of mnemonics:
- Acronyms created from the first letters of information to be recalled;
- Abbreviations from the first letters of each word of the information;
- Acronymic sentences;
- Pegwords that rhyme with numbers;
- Keywords that sound like the words to be recalled;
Make a Clear Study Guide
Study guides are very important when preparing for exams. They help you to understand the areas that need to be covered, the time available for covering the content, and the connection between the parts. Study guides allow students to draw on the existing knowledge to formulate meaning of text. The tools are interactive and dynamic, and are designed to enhance student involvement, highlight important information, and offer a preview of expectations. Whether or not your instructor provides a study guide for the test, you can always make your own. Skim through the notes, books, and any other material, noting down areas that you think may be covered in the test. Include important concepts, definitions, and formulas. As studies show, reading and writing the information as you create your study guide will help with recalling and memorizing.
Take Clear Notes and Use Flashcards
Even the most talented students have to take notes to help with recollection of concepts. The process entails dating entries and keeping notes from different classes and topics separate from each other. During classes, write down those concepts that the instructor noted on the board. If he or she considered it important enough to be written, then you should too. Try as much as possible to take your notes in outline form for ease of understanding.
Like notes, flashcards can be time-consuming. However, they are important to have and can be useful at every stage of the class. The cards offer a great tool for presenting, practicing, and recycling vocabulary. You can either buy flashcards or can make them yourself. Either way, they are easy to carry around and can be reviewed at any time.
Schedule Time for Studying and Take Breaks
Time is a very scarce resource when in college. Often, students find that they are swamped with assignments and personal responsibilities that allocating time for prepping for tests is a problem. We suggest getting an essay writer for you from online services. Such an individual could help with urgent projects and allow you to focus on studying. By making your study hours part of the routine, things get easy.
When setting time goals for yourself, remember to indicate breaks for resting. After all, studying is not as easy as many assume. You need intervals where your brain is allowed to process and retain the information studied. Don’t take too long between intervals. When you resume studying after a break, start by reviewing the material you have studied in the previous session before proceeding to something new.
Test Yourself as You Study
The only sure way to assess your progress is by self-testing. Prepare a mock quiz to judge how well you understand the material. Prepare a list of questions or keywords from the topics, leaving space underneath for the responses. You can then time yourself and take the test.
Form Study Groups
Studying with other people is more interesting and allows you to learn from each other. If possible, choose a specific location where you can meet with friends for your studies. Try to alternate between locations as memory is influenced by locations. Most importantly, make sure to get enough sleep.
Here, we have presented study tips to enhance learning and recall. Plan well and follow through.