Anyone who has taken a difficult class has found how challenging it can be to study and learn a complicated concept. Sometimes it seems that no matter how many times we read the same paragraph and repeat the same type of exercises, we will never be able to really understand the topic at hand.
However, many times the reason why so many hours of study are not giving you results is because you are not using the right method.
This is not something you should take lightly. Finding the study method that works best for you can dramatically improve your performance as a student even if your problem is lack of time.
In short, if work or family do not allow you to sit quietly and study, perhaps what you should change is the higher education format you are studying.
To go into more detail about these topics and offer you different methods that can help you study better, we have made this article. Keep reading!
University Study Methods
Before we talk about study methods for exams and quizzes, let’s talk a little about the first format that matters: how you’re going to study at university.
The reason this is important is because it is the basis of all your study: if you are not taking the format that best suits your personal circumstances, then no matter what you do, you are always going to suffer during the course.
However, if you fix this root cause, chances are you won’t have to change anything else.
So that you know if the university study method you chose is the right one, let’s talk about them.
This is the method we all know. It is about living the university experience, living with professionals in your area and with other students who share your same interest.
Traditional higher education invites you to live unforgettable experiences, forge lifelong friendships and even create partnerships with brilliant people at a time when they are most accessible. Can you imagine becoming friends with Larry Page, founder of Google, when he was just starting his studies at Stanford?
Of course, it’s unlikely you’ll meet a Larry Page in college, but it’s not impossible to find someone who also has good ideas and the desire to work on an interesting project.
Unfortunately, not everyone has the opportunity to study at university using this method. Whether it’s because you have a family to support, a job you can’t quit, or very little money, there are many reasons that can keep you from finishing your degree.
For those people, there is another method.
The distance study or online degree is a solution for those who do not have the ability to pursue a career in the traditional way.
Since all classes are conducted through online platforms, you may be able to study at a university that is thousands of miles from home. If you have children or a very demanding job, this option can help you a lot.
In addition, it should be added that it is usually much cheaper than a normal degree, since you spend less money on transportation, food and, in some cases, tuition.
If you are having a hard time meeting your student obligations, maybe what you need is to switch to this method.
Each of these formats has its advantages and disadvantages. The option you choose should suit your needs and what you want to achieve.
Now that we have covered the basis of your education, it is time to go into a little more detail about those study methods that will help you once you start studying.
Study Methods for Learning Concepts
The time has come to sit down to study and learn concepts. If you still have trouble understanding the topics you see in class, these study methods will help. Keep in mind that what we’ll suggest here are things that you can start applying right away and don’t need any kind of external tool to work (unless you count paper and pencil as such).
Let us begin!
One of the best ways to make sure a concept sticks in your head is through self-questioning. In short, ask yourself everything related to the subject, emphasizing those things that make it difficult for you to understand it.
You can ask as many questions as you like, but there are 3 in particular that you should always be able to answer to ensure you understand the topic.
- What is?
- How important is it for the class and the race in general?
- What applications does it have?
From this point on, it will be much easier for you to understand the subject and any questions that remain, you just have to turn it into a question and try to answer it.
mix of exercises
If you have an impatient mind that easily wanders after doing the same thing for several hours, then perhaps what you need is a method that is constantly changing.
It may sound a bit complicated, but it’s easier than you think. The only thing you need to start is to plan a series of exercises that lead you to understand the problem.
For example, if you need to study a difficult math concept, try dividing your study time into chunks, such as:
- 30 minutes of conceptual study.
- 10 minute break.
- 30 minutes of resolution of exercises.
- 10 minute break.
- 20 minutes of concept reinforcement.
In this way it will be much easier for you to stay focused and you will be able to learn any subject.
Relationship of concepts
Perhaps some topics are too difficult to understand, but, in general, to get to them you had to have gone through many others that should have prepared you for that moment. For example, to learn to multiply, you first had to learn to add.
The concept relationship method is simply about creating a connection between the topic that you are having a hard time with others that you have already mastered. In this way, the study becomes more intuitive and it is easier to understand new concepts in depth.
take notes by hand
If your degree, on the other hand, is extremely theoretical, one of the best strategies you can apply is to take notes by hand. When you write something and put it on paper (or on the computer, if you have one) your brain must go through a whole cognitive process to bring the information from your head to the notebook.
This process will help you retain the concepts more easily when you study in the future. Let’s say it’s almost like you’re “pre-studying” for your exam.
Of course, make sure your notes are organized so that it is not difficult for you to find the information you need.
If this article helped you find the format and method of study that suits you best, make sure to subscribe to our newsletter to have access to similar content!