Study skills, educational planning, or study strategies are methods used to learn. They help a student learn important aspects of studying such as finding the right time, staying on task, and keeping quiet. Study skills are a broad range of skills that address the process of absorbing new information, remembering it, organizing it, or even applying it. They are developed through sustained practice and by using controlled, directed environments.
The process of studying involves absorbing new information and assimilating it into one’s mind. There are three major ways to do this: physical study skills such as reading, writing, listening, and making notes; verbal skills such as speaking, listening, and writing; cognitive skills including problem solving, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation; and memory or “mood” skills such as following directions, performing well on tests, and storing information efficiently. These are just the broad areas studied in school.
A good plan for studying begins with an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of each area. For example, physical study skills can be assessed by a physical exam. For verbal skills, a review of the entire subject’s lecture notes may provide sufficient information. If oral communication is a problem, then an oral examination can be conducted. All of these skills will need to be assessed for effective functioning in college.
Studying in a controlled environment
Studying in a controlled environment provides students with a structure for their studies. This helps to keep control and organize the student’s time. Many students lack the discipline necessary to maintain a regular schedule when they’re studying for college. Students who attend classes only occasionally or in the evenings have little control over their own study skills, and usually must rely on their professors or other classmates to give them guidance.
In order to improve their study skills, college students must remember to take detailed notes at each class session. Instructors will often remind students to take notes at the start of each lecture. Taking detailed notes will help with any assignments or class quizzes. Studying and taking notes in a controlled environment will help the student focus and pay attention throughout the course.
Another step in developing study skills is the ability to prioritize tasks. In previous generations, students had to finish all of their assignments before moving onto the next one. This often made studying for multiple courses difficult, and often required the student to cram as much as possible to get all of the requirements done in a timely manner. By studying for a single course at a university, students can move ahead as fast as their capacity allows without having to worry about how many required books they’ll need to finish for the semester.
With all of these different elements involved, the goal of studying has changed somewhat. While still maintaining the importance of clear written communication, college students must learn how to study smart. Writing and reading extensively on the material is vital to successful completion of a course. When studying, students should make sure that they have a variety of resources available, including textbooks, notes taken during lectures, other notes on previous material, and friends and family who may be able to give input on various topics.
Multimedia while Study
Many students also choose to use a variety of multimedia tools while studying. Video lectures and tutorials are available through many universities for those who want a more hands-on approach to learning, while supplementary reading materials are often provided by the university as well. In recent years, there has also been an increase in the use of study aids such as computers, laptops, and electronic flash cards. All of these tools make studying more effective for many students, who find it easier to remember information after seeing it rather than simply listening to it. With so many students using these tools, it is no surprise that studying for a university degree has developed many new study skills.