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Mastering a Subject

The most important thing in mastering a subject is to know all the vocabulary and terminology involved in that subject and to be able to express oneself using that terminology.  I have been encouraging every student I deal with to make their own vocabulary list, with the word, a brief definition, and a sentence of their own creation.  Some students do this, others neglect this advice.  Next, one must think about the subject -- that means spend some time thinking over the ideas in that subject, and how they relate to other subjects.  Another thing is to work a lot of problems such as in math, geometry, physics, chemistry, or answer a lot of questions such as in history, or to practice speaking or listening to a foreign language when studying another language.  What I am suggesting is that a student who wishes to succeed and excel must go beyond teacher assignments.  The student must take charge of their own learning.  The student must keep vocabulary lists for every subject -- must go beyond classroom assignments in order to truly excel and not just plod along.