Let’s face it – studying isn’t fun and whoever says it’s a pleasant, relaxing experience, is probably lying. It’s a process that can take a lot of your time or no time at all depending on your learning style. Not to mention, studying can be stressful depending on your current grade. Since everyone studies at one point in their academic career (and I mean everyone, even the people who say they don’t), it’s important that your space is conducive to effective studying. But you might be asking yourself, “What exactly goes into an effective study space?”
Be smart! Put the smartphone away.
Yes, your phone can be an extremely helpful resource, but it can also be a huge distraction. Notifications from friends and social media can take your focus off what you’re supposed to be learning. The point of studying is to teach yourself concepts that you may not have a good understanding of, so why make the process of learning go even longer? Keep your phone nearby, either in your backpack or in a drawer, but not within your eyesight.
Color code your materials.
You may already color code your notes in order to make finding important concepts easier while you study, so why not apply that same technique to your class materials? Color coding your folders, notebooks, or binders based on your classes can help cut down the time you spend organizing or finding your papers, notes, quizzes, or tests. The goal when you’re studying is to spend time on the actual material that you’re learning, not on looking for that material. Make it easier on yourself with color coding.
Assess your study space.
How well you study can often be affected by your environment. So many factors can make or break your concentration. It’s surprising just how much lighting alone can actually impact your studying along with your general emotional well-being. Combine bad lighting with too hot or too cold temperatures, uncomfortable seating, or distracting noises and you have a recipe for studying disaster.
Keep your workspace clean.
You might’ve heard the saying, a cluttered space means a cluttered mind. The more that you have on your desk or workspace, the more likely you are to become distracted. That goes for your study materials as well. It doesn’t hurt to have a few things on your desk, but the more you clutter your work area, the more feelings of stress or anxiety might start to appear. No one wants to work while stressed, so make it easier on yourself – clean up your area before, during, and after you study to keep yourself focused.
There are a ton of ways to make studying easier and these are just a few tips that you can easily implement into your study routine. Whatever techniques you choose to use, make sure they can be applicable to each of your classes. However, if you’re finding it harder to study one subject over another, assess if you need to make a few tweaks to your routine. Just remember, the more you study, the better you’ll get at it. Good luck!