Ok, I think that everybody does learn differently, but here are some “rare” or “different” study tips that I used when I was at UC Berkeley. I’m certain they are what helped me to take 20+ units a semester and graduate in 2 years at 20. I really hope they can help you out also.
- Mimic test Environments. Lots of people don’t know this but our brains remember things better if we learned them in the same environment in which we will be tested. For example, if the room will cold make your study room cold, if it is hot wear a sweater when you study. Try it, it works.
- MP3 Notes. So I don’t know if I’m the only one who does this, but I record my notes as MP3 files and then listen to them on the go. First, it helps me to remember when I’m first learning the information, and then over time, I am better able to remember everything because I’m hearing it in my voice. Over and over again.
- A brief walk before a test. Lots of people think they should be cramming before an exam, and that is dead wrong. Lots of studies show that a brief 10–20-minute walk before your test will help you have better recall and maintain focus while you’re in the test.
- Don’t highlight. So this part of my don’t study hard but smart facts, but basically highlighting is useful. It focuses your brain on small unimportant facts and stops your brain from making larger connections. So don’t highlight and underline it doesn’t do anything, but get you to focus on a single small detail.
- Cramming is bad and good. I know a lot of people don’t say this, but I’m going to tell you why you shouldn’t cram and why you should. Cramming is bad because you jumble up all the information and facts, but if you quickly review 2–3 hours before the test everything research has shown that you will outperform the ones who didn’t quickly review everything.
- Study Smart not Hard. I mentioned this briefly above, but basically, it means to focus on the authors not just their theories. Focus on big ideas and not just the small details, and never study just a single subject all day. .
- Syllabus. Lots of people look at the syllabus for one minute at the start of the semester, but with most teachers, it actually has the most important info you need. Whether Berkeley or Harvard so many of my teachers told me that each week may have 4–5 readings of assignments, but the most important ones where the first ones, so focus on those.
- Study before Bed. Lots of people think if they are tired they won’t learn things, but science shows that if you study right before bed you’ll remember things better. I tried it and it does work.
- Teach Someone. I only was ready to take an exam after I spent like 20 minutes teaching someone else the information. I would annoy my friends in school, high school friends, or parents to make sure I knew it well enough to teach it.
- Tell a story. Ok so you can make up a story or find one of TV, but whenever I couldn’t remember things I would make a story for it. I would make up characters and names that directly tied back to the materials, and during the test, all I needed to do to get the A was write out my story.
Ok, so those are some rare, odd, different, and interesting study techniques that I used to ace all of my classes. I hope they help you out as much as they helped me. If they do make sure to share the answer so it can help others also!
Credit: According to a renowned professor at Khan academy.