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5 Study Habits You Should Be Practicing

5 Study Habits You Should Be Practicing

With exams, quizzes, essays, projects, and myriad deadlines for different things, effective study habits are critical for keeping stress at bay during college. Having these great study habits can make things easier and alleviate some of the stress looming overhead. If you are in need of a bit of an improvement, or just want to get some new ideas, keep reading for the top five study habits that you should be practicing.

1. Make and use flashcards.

Flashcards are designed to promote active memory recall of information. By using flashcards with a question or term on one side and the answer or definition on the other, you will force your brain to recall the necessary information. Even if you struggle a bit with a card, you will still be actively reviewing the necessary material.

One of the other reasons why flashcards are effective is that they utilize spaced repetition learning techniques. Spaced repetition has been proven time and time again to be one of the most effective ways of building up memory and increasing recall of information. By studying the information again and again, at spaced intervals, you will be able to recall the information faster and far more easily.

2. Revise, revise, revise!

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    Many students put off studying until just before the exam, with the more diligent students giving themselves a week or two prior to a test. While this may sound effective and like a good manner of planning, it’s actually an ineffective method of preparing and studying. It’s best to revise the information a little bit every day, so that you are not overwhelmed when a test (or pop quiz!) comes around.

    One method of revising is to make a mind-map. This is a bit like a flowchart, in that you start with one core concept in the center, and then branch off into connected sections. This will help you to connect everything together and associate the terms with one another. When it comes time to take the exam, you will be better prepared and the key terms will jump out at you.

    Read aloud to yourself and, as silly as it may seem, pretend you are teaching a student. Read your notes aloud, pretend you are lecturing. Do this over and over, until you no longer have to look at your notes. Once you have accomplished that, do it again.

    Take one of the main concepts and turn it into a little story. Make sure you are able to explain this concept, no matter how complex it actually is, to someone who has never heard of it before. For example, if you are studying the industrial revolution, write a story that is written in such a way that it would explain that concept and events to someone who has never heard of it before. While this may sound silly and tedious, it’s an incredibly effective means of going over the information and looking at it in a new light. This, in turn, creates new associations and gives your brain a visual representation of the information, thereby making it easier to remember and recall.

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    Finally, come up with a keywords list. Take each of the main concepts for the subject you are studying, and reduce it into a ONE-word sub-topic. Study this list and memorize it. Incorporate it into the above methods, especially when using your flashcards. When it comes time for the exam, write down your list of keywords the moment you have that test in front of you. This will ensure you easily remember each topic and sub-topic, as well as providing a frame of reference if you get a blank during the test.

    3. Watch related lectures and videos.

    light apple books desk large

      One of the most effective—and the most fun—methods of studying is to watch related lectures and videos in order to supplement the material. Watch documentaries or videos on YouTube and educational websites. You may be surprised at how much you can learn from videos, and just how much information is available online.

      On a related note, you may also be able to download or stream podcasts that cover a large range of topics. Depending on what you are studying, you may find this to be very useful and entertaining.

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      4. Create practice tests based off previous tests.

      You should save all of the graded papers, quizzes, tests, assignments, and handouts that your teacher hands back to you. This will not only show you how well you did, but it will also highlight what you need to work on and where your strengths lie in that particular subject. You will also be able to learn the format of the tests, the structure of the questions, and whether or not to predict the inclusion of tricky True/False questions.

      Use these graded tests to create a new practice test. Include the questions you got correct, for some variety, but mainly focus on the questions you answered incorrectly. By focusing solely on these parts of the required material, you will turn your weaknesses around and even out the dents in your recall. Come test time, you will be far less stressed and feel more prepared.

      5. Re-write your notes.

      Studies have shown that writing information out by hand increases your ability to recall the material. This makes the recall go hand-in-hand with muscle memory, and you will be able to picture your written notes when you are taking the exam.

      One of the best ways to do this is to prepare for each class far ahead of time. Before the lecture begins, stake out your spot and go back over the assigned reading, your notes from the last class, and any homework you completed the night before. Right before the lecture starts, scan through the notes from the previous lecture as a means of gaining a sense of context that you will be able to build the new material on. This way, you will be able to focus on the lecture in order to get the information you will not be able to just look up in the book later on after the class has ended.

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      When you take the notes, write the information in your words rather than just blindly writing down what the professor says. This will help you to better grasp and retain the information. After class, re-write your notes in a more organized manner. This will help you to go over the information, as well as to ensure you have a sold set of notes for studying later on. As you go through the notes, summarize each section. This will sum it all up in your own vernacular, and show that you truly do understand the concepts. It will also show where any gaps in your understanding of the material may be.

      coffee desk notes studying

        Using outline formats with bullets, indentations, and numbering in order to make the hierarchical relationship between different points even more obvious will further solidify the information in your mind. Leaving space between the lines will also makes your notes easier to scan and study later on.

        The Cornell method is also extremely effective, especially if you do the summary at the end of the page. Fold your paper to have a large section on the right, and a smaller section on the left. On the right, jot down the pertinent information, points, or definitions during class. On the left, write questions for the information on the right, as you would read on a test. The left section is also the place for terms that are defined by the information on the right. At the very bottom of each page, add a summary of the above information. Later, when you go to study the notes, you can cover up the right column and make your notes a great means of preparing for exams.

        These are the five most effective study habits, and something all successful students do. Make sure you are on top of your game by following these study methods!

        Featured photo credit: pexels via static.pexels.com

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        Last Updated on January 13, 2020

        50 Motivational Quotes for Work to Inspire Success

        50 Motivational Quotes for Work to Inspire Success

        Let’s face it – no matter how excited you are about a new project or priority in your life, there will always be days when your motivation lags. Days when – despite all the progress you’ve made in the past – it just sounds easier to sit on the couch playing video games than to buckle down and crank out the work needed to meet your goals.

        In order to be successful, you must be able to motivate yourself past these humps. Whenever you feel your drive and determination lagging, turn to these motivational quotes for work to provide the extra spark of passion needed to keep you on track.

        Quotes about Goal Setting

        Whether you’re still in the planning phases of your business or whether you’re plotting a plan of attack to bring about your long-range vision, setting good goals is a critical part of succeeding in business.

        Check out these quotes for extra inspiration on how to turn your dreams into reality:

        quote-Benjamin-E.-Mays-the-tragedy-in-life-doesnt-lie-in-106113

          “The tragedy in life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goal. The tragedy lies in having no goal to reach.”– Benjamin Mays


          “By recording your dreams and goals on paper, you set in motion the process of becoming the person you most want to be. Put your future in good hands — your own.”–Mark Victor Hansen


          “Give yourself an even greater challenge than the one you are trying to master and you will develop the powers necessary to overcome the original difficulty.”–William J. Bennett – The Book of Virtues


          “The entrepreneur is essentially a visualizer and actualizer… He can visualize something, and when he visualizes it he sees exactly how to make it happen.”–Robert L. Schwartz

          Quotes about Achieving Excellence in Work

          Once you’ve got your goals together, you’ll need to put in 110% of your effort in order to transform these visions into reality. To increase your motivation to work at a consistently high level, take a look at the following words of wisdom:

          “Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.”–Aristotle


          “If you are going to achieve excellence in big things, you develop the habit in little matters. Excellence is not an exception, it is a prevailing attitude.”–Charles R. Swindoll

          Desire is the key to motivation

            “Desire is the key to motivation, but it’s determination and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal — a commitment to excellence — that will enable you to attain the success you seek.”–Mario Andretti


            “The secret of joy in work is contained in one word – excellence. To know how to do something well is to enjoy it.”–Pearl Buck


            “The quality of a person’s life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor.”–Vince Lombardi

            Quotes about Determination and Persistence

            Since every business or other endeavor is bound to hit some rough patches, it’s often a person’s level of determination and patience that brings about either success or failure. These positive quotes give you an extra boost of encouragement:

            “Enter every activity without giving mental recognition to the possibility of defeat. Concentrate on your strengths, instead of your weaknesses… on your powers, instead of your problems.”–Paul J. Meyer


            “Knowing trees, I understand the meaning of patience. Knowing grass, I can appreciate persistence.”–Hal Borland


            “Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”–Calvin Coolidge

            quote-Thomas-Fuller-an-invincible-determination-can-accomplish-almost-anything-92190

              “An invincible determination can accomplish almost anything and in this lies the great distinction between great men and little men.”–Thomas Fuller

              Quotes about Leadership

              Whether you use it to engage your employees, to encourage teamwork or motivate others to follow your unique way of thinking, leadership is crucial. Take your leadership cues from these renowned leaders’ famous sayings:

              “The most dangerous leadership myth is that leaders are born — that there is a genetic factor to leadership. This myth asserts that people simply either have certain charismatic qualities or not. That’s nonsense; in fact, the opposite is true. Leaders are made rather than born.” –Warren G. Bennis


              “All of the great leaders have had one characteristic in common: it was the willingness to confront unequivocally the major anxiety of their people in their time. This, and not much else, is the essence of leadership.”–John Kenneth Galbraith

              Leadership is not magnetic personality

                “Leadership is not magnetic personality — that can just as well be a glib tongue. It is not ‘making friends and influencing people’ — that is flattery. Leadership is lifting a person’s vision to high sights, the raising of a person’s performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations.”–Peter F. Drucker


                “The task of leadership is not to put greatness into people, but to elicit it, for the greatness is there already.”–John Buchan


                “High sentiments always win in the end. The leaders who offer blood, toil, tears and sweat always get more out of their followers than those who offer safety and a good time. When it comes to the pinch, human beings are heroic.”–George Orwell

                Quotes for Success

                Think of success as a holistic process – one which results from the combination of goal-setting, excellence, patience, determination and leadership you prioritize throughout your career. These highly successful people provide you with an excellent source of motivation:

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                “Be patient with yourself. Self-growth is tender; it’s holy ground. There’s no greater investment.”–Stephen Covey


                “Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.”–Norman Vincent Peale

                Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.

                  “Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.”–Winston Churchill


                  “Successful and unsuccessful people do not vary greatly in their abilities. They vary in their desires to reach their potential.”–John Maxwell


                  “Would you like me to give you a formula for success? It’s quite simple, really. Double your rate of failure. You are thinking of failure as the enemy of success. But it isn’t at all. You can be discouraged by failure or you can learn from it, So go ahead and make mistakes. Make all you can. Because remember that’s where you will find success.”– Thomas J. Watson


                  “The great successful men of the world have used their imagination.  They think ahead and create their mental picture in all its details, filling in here, adding a little there, altering this a bit and that a bit, but steadily building – steadily building.”–Robert Collier


                  “It is a paradoxical but profoundly true and important principle of life that the most likely way to reach a goal is to be aiming not at that goal itself but at some more ambitious goal beyond it.”–Arnold Toynbee

                  Sports Quotes for Athletes

                  You don’t need to be a Michael Jordan-caliber athlete to draw inspiration from the following quotes. Even if you’re just a recreational player or someone who’s using sports as a means to get back in shape after long periods of inactivity, the following motivational sports quotes will encourage you:

                  “My attitude is that if you push me towards something that you think is a weakness, then I will turn that perceived weakness into a strength.”–Michael Jordan


                  “Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.”–Lance Armstrong

                  Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths.

                    “Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.”–Arnold Schwarzenegger


                    “I know what I have to do, and I’m going to do whatever it takes. If I do it, I’ll come out a winner, and it doesn’t matter what anyone else does.”–Florence Griffith Joyner


                    “Every time you stay out late; every time you sleep in; every time you miss a workout; every time you don’t give 100% – You make it that much easier for me to beat you.”–Unknown


                    “If you are hurt, whether in mind or body, don’t nurse your bruises. Get up and light-heartedly, courageously, good temperedly get ready for the next encounter. This is the only way to take life – this is also ‘playing’ the game!”–Emily Post


                    “We must train from the inside out. Using our strengths to attack and nullify any weaknesses. It’s not about denying a weakness may exist but about denying its right to persist.”–Vince McConnell

                    Quotes to Motivate Learning

                    Committing yourself to pursuing knowledge in a single area is a tremendous endeavor – one that often seems overwhelming given the depth and breadth of information that’s available today. Keep the following motivational quotes in mind if you’re learning:

                    “How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and the strong. Because someday in life you will have been all of these.”–George Washington Carver

                    quote-William-Arthur-Ward-if-you-can-imagine-it-you-can-36189

                      “If you can imagine it, you can achieve it; if you can dream it, you can become it.”–William Arthur Ward


                      “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.”– Aristotle


                      “Success is not the key to happiness.Happiness is the key to success.If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”–Albert Schweitzer


                      “Wear your learning, like your watch, in a private pocket: and do not pull it out and strike it, merely to show that you have one.”–Philip Stanhope, 4th Earl of Chesterfield


                      “He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever.”–Chinese Proverb


                      “Study while others are sleeping; work while others are loafing; prepare while others are playing; and dream while others are wishing.”–William Arthur Ward


                      “Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled ‘This could change your life’.”–Helen Exley


                      “A book is like a garden carried in the pocket.”–Chinese Proverb

                      All-Time Favorite Positive Quotes

                      Finally, whatever your goals are in life, you can’t go wrong by taking the advice of the following famous motivational quotes:

                      “Change your thoughts and you change your world.”–Norman Vincent Peale


                      “Your time is limited, don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma, which is living the result of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinion drowned your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition, they somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”–Steve Jobs


                      “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”–Maria Robinson


                      “Out of clutter, find Simplicity. From discord, find Harmony. In the middle of difficulty lies Opportunity.”–Albert Einstein


                      “Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose.”–Lyndon Johnson

                      If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves.

                        “If we did all the things we are capable of, we would astound ourselves.”–Thomas Edison


                        “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”–Wayne Gretzky


                        “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”–Winston Churchill


                        “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”–Ralph Waldo Emerson

                        Final Thoughts

                        To use these motivational quotes effectively, find the one that speaks to you. Although all of the phrases listed above can be considered “motivational,” only you can decide which one resonates with you most directly.

                        Next, take the quote you’ve settled on and copy it onto small index cards or other pieces of paper that can be stored around your home and workspace.

                        If you’re creative, you can create inspiration boards, signs or other decorative displays featuring your favorite motivational quotes – really, though, the most important thing is that your chosen phrase be accessible in a variety of different places. This will make it easy to access and review whenever you feel your motivation slipping away.

                        More Inspiring Quotes

                        Featured photo credit: Kyle Glenn via unsplash.com

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