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Developing Effective Study Habits

Developing Effective Study Habits
Recently, my schedule has gone from intermittently busy to consistently busy. This has led me to make a fundamental shift in how I manage my time. It also got me thinking about my next blog post – time management. I went exploring on the Internet and hit pay dirt. What follows is an outline of what I found.
Regarding time management for students, authors advocate developing better skills that make you better at studying and developing better habits for studying. For brevity’s sake, I am going to focus on developing good study habits. There are 10 habits that can help the studying process. They are outlined below.
1) Study at times when you work best. During college this varied for me depending on the type of studying I had to do; but, in general, this was between 1:00 and 4:00 am.
2) Get and stay organized. Arrange your space, stuff, time, and technology. This allows you to maximize your studying efficiency.
3) Overcome Procrastination. Learn what leads to your procrastinating and eliminate it.
4) Manage your time wasters. For example, I find many students, once they find what they needed on the Internet, continue wasting time by surfing the Internet.
5) Identify your goals. Goals are outcomes. What is it you want to show for the time you spent studying?
6) Do the worst first. By doing the worst first you force yourself to be efficient. This also helps by minimizing your wasting time by extending a pleasant task beyond the time it should actually take to complete it.
7) Manage your interruptions. For many students this means isolating themselves. The most important isolating activity is not taking calls or answering texts during your study time.
8) Use pre-study tasks to prepare yourself for studying. This could be an extension of organizing your study space, time, stuff, and technology.
9) Use/develop time management tools. Early in my college career, I started developing daily calendars separate into one-hour chunks of time. I placed certain activities in each chunk of time and followed that calendar no matter what. This resulted in more efficient studying and better grades.
10) Break larger tasks into smaller ones. Some of these time management habits I learned on my own; others I learned while researching this post. Some are time-honored; some are new. But all can help you prepare yourself for studying. Try some of them, you just might be surprised! See also:


Colleen L.

Professor for Theses and Doctoral Guidance and Standardized Test Prep

300+ hours