Studying is something that each student needs to learn for themselves. Each individual learns differently. These study tips can help improve memory and retention; but they do not all work for everyone. Test these out and see which ones work best for you.
- Discover how you learn. Some people learn best by reading, some by seeing, some by listening, and some by doing. Each individual probably a lie somewhere in the middle and a combination of the three learning styles is best. Once you learn how you learn and retain information best, practice that style of studying. Convert the information into the way that you learn best. That can mean reading information out loud or discussing it with fellow students, it can mean writing down the information instead of reading it, perhaps recording the professor’s lectures is best for you, or you may need to find other ways to visualize the content.
- Spray an unfamiliar scent while studying. Then spray the scent again before you take the test. The scent association will help you recall things when you were studying and smelled the same scent. Changing your study place also works in the same way; information is recalled based on the different location you were in when you studied it.
- Listening to instrumental music very low in the background can help you stay focused while studying something that is monotonous or boring.
- Take notes as if you were writing them for someone else. In fact, make copies and trade notes with other study partners, you might find that you can remember things better coming from other students or you they might have picked up something in their notes that you missed.
- Take notes in different colors. The color coded topics can help aide in memory retention.
- Take a few minutes just before your test and write down everything you remember on a note card. It is a great exercise to help with recall and also gives you an arsenal of note cards when it comes time to study for the final.
- At the beginning of a math test, write down all of the formulas first while they are fresh in your head.
- Visualize what you are reading and studying. This is one time where having an active imagination can actually help you out. You can recall vivid visualizations during a test more easily than just words.
- Use word associations to help you remember certain words or stories. This is an old trick for learning even simple things like spelling, but can also work in a more advanced college learning environment.
- Watch documentaries to help you learn about history. This helps students who are visual or auditory learners absorb the information instead of reading a text book. Keep in mind, you will still need to read the text book or refer to the lecture notes to know what will be on the test
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Laura Wilson is blogger and Brand Manager for Carepackages.com. She enjoys sharing her 10 tips to improve your memory for studying.