Your go-to study guide for midterm season
Eugenia De Coss // Contributor
Celia Palomar Robisco (She/Her) // Illustrator
Efficient study habits are different for everyone. Though a good rule of thumb is to remember that choosing study habits is dependent on the specific area of studies. For instance, studying for a math exam is different from an exam for business school. Because we are all different individuals, we need different approaches, which might vary depending on the number of courses. Based on the interviews with students and teachers, there are a variety of effective practices for each student’s needs.
While analysing our interviews with random students on campus, it was amazing how different studies have their own strategies, even though many students shared similarities in their study habits. In the interview with a full-time student in business school, he explained his approaches, including the importance of resigning from employment during the term. He talked about potential problems if he had decided to continue work while studying since over-work affected his academic performance. We also talked about how he was able to focus while studying; he said that he prefers a quiet study environment, without music. Moreover, he said that he starts early, giving him lots of time to finish assignments. What works for him best, is to memorize content by studying through books and teacher’s notes. Students in other areas also share similar studying habits. Two students from kinesiology explained their strategies, which vary from the programs. The students mention that they worked on assignments and exam preparation based on the deadline dates. Also, the two students shared that study without listening to music, and it helps them when they are in a quiet space. Due to the content in kinesiology, they often cue cards and notes to study for exams. Similarly, they also rewrite notes for better clarity.
As an ECCE student, I have my own strategies for studying. I share similar approaches from the students mentioned above, but I often listen to music while studying. It helps me to focus and understand content. These students mention effective strategies; students should select them depending on their programs.
Instructors also shared their advice about study habits. An instructor from the writing center explains her top advice for students taking courses that required written assignments. She emphasises that it is important to get an early start in assignments because she explains that a proper assignment takes time. That way, students have enough time to redrafting, organizing ideas, and finding materials for easy access and reviews. If students are having difficulties with their assignments, they should see help early. Moreover, the instructor emphasises the importance of proper nutrition. Instructors in the math department have similar ideas. The instructor explains that it is important to ask for academic support on time. To be efficient, scheduling time for homework and studying is essential. Also, students can ask for clarification and go to instructor’s office hours. For students, they shouldn’t be shy about asking teachers for support.
There are several study strategies, but not all of them work on everyone. For instance, I find music helpful to study, which is something some students don’t like. Another important factor is the areas of study. Depending on the area, some study strategies don’t work well. Practice exercises might not work for my courses in analyzing text and reading skills. Luckily, experience and seeing support help students to determine the good ones for them. Study habits can determine students’ successes.