Reading Week study tips: How to use your break effectively

Now that many University of Saskatchewan students are settled into their classes and routines, it’s time to use every spare moment effectively.

Here are 12 Reading Week study tips from Student Learning Services to help you through your break.

  1. Review your notes immediately after each class.  Write a short summary of what was covered during class and label any material you didn't understand.
  2. When studying, turn your phone off and put it far away.
  3. Don’t forget to write your name on the exam paper. Always make this the first thing you do.
  4. Set study goals to prepare for a study session.  Instead of a vague goal like “Read my Physics 115 textbook,” set a specific goal such as “Read Chapter 4 in my Physics 115 textbook within the next 50 minutes & compare to my class notes.”  Jot down start and stop times, and be realistic. 
  5. Have a Growth Mindset. Treat your brain like a muscle where you can strengthen and develop new neural pathways through deep, active learning and using repetition in your studying.  It is possible to change your brain! 
  6. Turn textbook headings into questions.  Then, after you read each section, see if you can answer your question.
  7. A great study resource is Quizlet. Enter material you need to memorize, and the site will generate flashcards, games, and quizzes for you.
  8. Use the U of S Assignment Paper Planner as a resource to help you write your research papers.  Enter the due date for your paper and the system breaks the writing assignment into a series of steps, establishes a time-line for the steps, and has links to great help resources along the way.  Google “Assignment Planner usask”.
  9. Solve old exam questions as an effective active, deep-learning study strategy.  Go to the USSU Help Centre and find copies of over a thousand old exams that you can use to practice problem-solving and to test your knowledge. 
  10. Explain a concept to a friend. If you succeed, without checking your notes, you've got a good grasp of the material.  Teaching someone is one of the best forms of learning!
  11. Strive for five. Even when feeling unmotivated or procrastinating on some task, commit to spending five minutes on the task.  This is a short time commitment.  And, there is a good chance you will continue working longer.
  12. Be in control of your study time by building in brief rewards.  Reward yourself with things you enjoy, such as enjoying slice of pizza, reading the newspaper, going for a swim, or listening to your favorite music.  

And don’t forget that Student Learning Services offers additional learning support to all university students through a number of workshops and online resources, including study skills, library skills and writing-help videos. There is also drop-in support available as well for writing and math and stats.

Photo by Anwyn Huber-Stevenson.

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