How to Develop Good Study Skills
The information presented in this section is designed to help you to sharpen your study skills, establish good work habits, and maximize your educational experience.
Why Should I Study?
Through study you discover new and important information. You also learn how new knowledge adds to what you already know.
How Should I Read?
Where and When Should I Study?
How Much Time is Enough?
Are There Any Special Secrets To Studying?
Sorry! There's no magic and there are no secrets that will suddenly give you good study skills. Like all skills, study skills are perfected over time through consistent effort. There are, however, some common tips that will help you to develop good study habits.
Previewing Class Material
Good study skills start before class begins!
Before attending class:
After reviewing the appropriate material, you are ready to begin to do exercises assigned by your instructor. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of these exercises.
Comparing and Contrasting
Many times what you are learning is similar to a topic or concept that you are already familiar with. Other times you may be learning something totally new and will find it difficult to relate to any previous experience. It is important that you learn to make decisions based on comparing and contrasting concepts. You must learn to identify concepts that look almost identical but are not. When comparing concepts, learn to ask:
By asking yourself these questions you can avoid making careless errors and eleminate needless confusion.
In many areas of study each new concept or skill is dependent on those previously learned. If a certain skill has not been learned well enough, it will most likely affect your ability to learn the next concept or skill. Remember:
After working a problem or completing a new section, it is always a good idea to take a few moments and consider what you have just done. Think carefully about how the problems or examples relate to what you have previously learned. How are they the same or different from those already studied? What new ideas or procedures were introduced? Are you comfortable with your level of understanding? Do you need to go back and review before moving to the next topic?
An honest self evaluation of your skills and understanding may be the single most important step you can take to ensure your continued success.