Students will deal with a lot of issues in their lives while at school, and due to all the different things competing for their interest, it’s hard to focus. Studying is no different; however the effectiveness of studying can be greatly reduced if students are trying to do more than one thing at once. Normally, students will do anywhere between 30minutes to several hours of study each night depending on their level at school. The key to effective studying isn’t cramming a lot of information a night or two before the exam, but it is Studying smarter.
The way the students approach studying does matter! Usually it’s considered an onerous and necessary task, instead of an opportunity to learn and improve. Research dictates that the approach to studying matters almost as much as the study itself. Being in the correct positive mindset is very important in order to make the most of the time spent studying.
Some ways to help improve mindset and break through psychological barriers:
- Thinking positively when studying (The student should be reminded of their skills and abilities)
- Phrasing their thinking can be key to changing their study. When they’re mentioning “I’m a mess- I’ll never learn everything in time- I’m doomed”, try and help them understand that it is still worth putting in study time!
- Try to let them focus on what they’re doing at hand, and not comparing themselves to others – keeping them a lot more positive about how they can improve themselves.
Usually when students do get around to studying, their attention is diluted across several things. Sometimes they’re listening to music, or with friends chatting, on their mobile phones, glancing at the television- and all of this while they’re meant to be studying!
Effectively, the time spent studying is ineffective, and while they might log 2 hours of “study”, maybe only half of the time was actually spent working. If their minds are wandering, they won’t be paying full attention or be able to pick up on the finer points of what they’re learning. Further, distractions are just that-Distractions. They’re likely to find them to be more interesting than the math they’re meant to be doing, and this can easily spiral.
Let’s face it, usually students don’t really want to study as they have a lot of fun youthful life to enjoy instead. Having said that, it would follow that the time they do allocate to studying should be effective. To do this, they need to bring minimal distractions and a healthy mindset. They should set up some goals and a schedule they can stick to! For example: Instead of spending two hours studying math while texting their friends and listening to music on their Ipod; they could spend one hour studying effectively, and then take 20minutes reward to call or text their friend and enjoy their music. It makes a lot more sense to make the most of the task as you’re doing.
The main concept resonating here is ‘Work hard – Play hard’.