How to Study Effectively for School or College [Top 6 Science-Based Study Skills]


How to study effectively, using 6 essential strategies. If you’re a student, you’ve probably wondered
– what is the most effective way to study? That’s a smart question, because most people
unfortunately waste their time with stuff that just isn’t effective. So I asked the cognitive psychologists over
at The Learning Scientists for some tips. After all their research into the science
of learning and absolute best-practice study skills, here are their top six strategies
to bring out your inner genius. The first strategy is called spaced practice. 5 hours of study crammed into one intensive
session is not as good as that same 5 hours spread out over two weeks. You’ll learn more and get better results
with the same amount of time or less. It’ll be less stressful than the panic of
cramming, and because you’ll learn more you’ll also reduce the time you need to
study in the future, because you won’t have to re-learn the same information. Make a plan and schedule short study sessions
into your calendar, this is not about marathon, intensive periods of study. Review information from each class, starting
a day later. After you’ve covered the most recent class,
go back and study important older information to keep it fresh. And don’t just re-read your notes – that’s
ineffective. Use the other strategies in this video. And leave 2-3 days between study sessions
on the same subject, the key is consistent short study sessions over time. Switch between ideas during a single study
session for a particular class, this is called interleaving. Don’t study one idea, topic or type of problem
for too long. Switching will highlight and contrast the
similarities or differences between topics or types of questions. If you’re doing problem solving, switching
can help you choose the correct approach to solve a problem. This strategy will encourage you to make links
between ideas as you switch between them. You want your mind to be nimble and easily
able to jump between ideas and know how they relate to each other. Make sure you study enough information to
understand an idea before you switch, you’ll need to figure out what works best for you
– don’t spend an entire session on one topic, but don’t switch too often either. Try to make links between ideas as you move
between them. And for your next study session, change the
order you work through topics, because that will strengthen your understanding even more. Switching will probably feel harder than studying
one topic for a long time, but remember, we want to use what’s most effective, not what’s
easiest. The next strategy is for when you have your
textbook and notes in front of you. Ask yourself questions about how and why things
work, and then find the answers in your class material. Explain and describe ideas with as many details
as you can and connect the ideas to your daily life and experiences. This forces you to understand and explain
what you’re learning, and connect it with what you already know. That helps you organize the new ideas and
makes them easier to recall later. Creating ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions
makes you think about how ideas are similar or different, and that improves your understanding. Start with your notes and textbook and make
a list of the ideas you need to learn. Go down the list and ask yourself questions
about how these ideas work and why. Then go through your class material again
and look for answers to your own questions. Make connections between different ideas and
explain to yourself how they work together. The specific questions you ask and how you
break down ideas depends on what you’re studying, it might be math, science, history
or something else completely. Check out the description below this video
for some examples. Use specific, concrete examples. Relevant examples help demonstrate and explain
ideas, which helps you to understand them better. Human memory hooks onto concrete information
better than abstract information, so always look for real life examples you can relate
to. For example ‘scarcity’ is an abstract
idea. You can explain it as ‘the rarer something
is, the higher its value will be’. But we’ve used abstract terms to explain
an abstract idea. Not so helpful. So we use a specific example to illustrate
the idea. Think about a ticket scalper. If you purchase a ticket to a sports event
at the start of the season, the ticket price is reasonable. But as the game day gets closer and the two
teams are now at the top of the ladder, more people buy tickets. This scarcity drives up the cost of the tickets
and the ticket scalper charges more for the tickets. That’s a concrete example of an abstract
idea. You can collect examples from your teacher
or professor, search your textbook or notes, and look out for examples in your daily life. Thinking of your own relevant examples is
most helpful for your learning, but be careful to confirm with your teacher that your examples
are accurate and relevant to the idea you’re learning. Make the link between the idea and the example,
and you’ll understand how the example applies. Combine verbal material with visuals. Doing this gives you two ways of understanding
and remembering the information later on. Find visuals in your notes and textbook and
examine how the words are describing what’s in the image. Then do it the other way around – how does the
image represent what’s described by the text? Look at the visuals and explain in your own
words what they mean. Then take the words for your class materials
and draw your own picture for them. Try to create different ways to represent
the information, and start to use this strategy when you practice retrieving your knowledge
later on. And just to clarify, this is not about learning
styles. A great deal of research has shown that assessing
your learning style and matching your study approach to that style does not improve your
learning. Just because you might prefer pictures doesn’t
mean it’s the most effective way for you to learn. You learn best when you combine words and
visuals. And finally, this is the single most valuable
study skill to help you boost your performance, so it’s definitely worth mastering. Practice retrieving everything in your head
you already know about a topic. Put away all your notes and textbooks and
write down or sketch out everything you know right now. Why? Because retrieving your knowledge like this
reinforces what you’ve learned and makes it easier to remember later on. But also, improvement comes with practice. If you want to get better at recalling information
in exams, then you should practice recalling information now, just like you practice any
other skill. Plus it highlights what you don’t know and
that’s where you should focus your study time. Makes sense, right? So what’s the best way to do this? Take as many practice tests as you possibly
can, even if you have to make them up and swap with a friend. Or just start with a blank piece of paper
and empty your brain, write out everything you know, draw sketches or concept maps linking
all the ideas together. Make sure you do this a while after you’ve
learned something, so put away your notes – this is not about reciting information
you’ve just glanced at in your textbook. Once you’re finished, check what you’ve
written against your class material. What did you get right or wrong, and what
didn’t you recall at all. That’s perfect feedback and shows you where
you need to get better. Now you know the six study strategies academic
research says are the most effective, here’s a simple way to recall them for your next
study session. If you’d like some free downloadable posters
about these 6 strategies to put on your wall, follow the link in the description below this
video. Thanks for watching, bye!

100 thoughts on “How to Study Effectively for School or College [Top 6 Science-Based Study Skills]”

  1. If you thought this video was valuable, please give it a 'thumbs up' and leave a comment so other people will know it's worth watching too. Thanks!

    Want to memorize 10X faster? Check out https://www.memorize.academy/free-memory-training

  2. IM always scared to get things wrong in tests and important exams so i flick through my Notes and get down the key information and read through it but it didnt help but this video help a lot and now i know what to do

  3. I’m having my GCSEs this year. What’s the best way to study? Is it effective to finish one subject completely and then go for the next or should I study a different subject every day? For example on day 1 math, day 2 bio, day 3 physics, day 4, 5, 6, 7 and repeat weekly. Also, is 4-5 hours daily enough?

  4. If I don't cram I forget things and get bored, which makes it even more painful to sit down and get new information into my brain.

  5. You got any quick last minute study tips I have a test tomorrow and don’t understand the material

  6. Can you do a video for non traditional students who work 40+ hours a week while attending college and dealing with other responsibilities

  7. I'm a teacher and I always stumbled upon the same problem: how can I get my students te 1 learn and 2 learn effectively. This video and especially the materials provided on your website have worked wonders in my classes. Thank you for this!

  8. Hi Memorize Academy I hope you read this message and reply to it. I want to get straight 9’s (A*) at GCSE. I’m currently in year 9 starting term 4 do you think this is possible to do. I have chose Computer Science, French and History and I’m doing English Literature a year early so in May year 10 I’ve chose GCSE P.E. and I’m in higher maths and I’m doing triple science (Chemistry, Biology and Physics) and I would love to go to Oxford University to study Computer Science and French. If you could can you give me some strategies you think would help and any other person who think they could be able to help me.
    Edit: Thank you everyone who is liking and commenting and I had to correct a spelling error.

  9. This is brilliant and so very practical!! Thank you! I am looking for ways to help my sons and I am going to try these. Thanks very much

  10. Man geography has ALOT OF STUFF TO MEMORIZE like dates, countries, diagrams etc etc. I wish it was easier for me to understand but I guess it’s not my main subject.

  11. This is amazing. Very helpful practical advices. Could you please make a video on how to memorize huge list of words

  12. I tend to put off studying something…. and then I do it all at once. Bad idea, should have do a bit of everything over a longer period of time

  13. Thank you. I am in 7th grade and in my first term of Semester 1, I only got a B+ in English and A+ in Science, and I'm really hoping to improve and not gain any C's. From my low marks, I am very motivated to study and accomplish even better grades!
    Thank you again for making this video. I greatly appreciate it so much!

  14. wow! this helped a LOT! i have exams soon and i’ve been studying, but this video helped me study better! thanks for this!

  15. Thanks! Our teacher started giving us 3-4 pages to study and we only have 2 weeks. I wanted to know how to study better so i can study at reading time and not at home also.
    Edit: I thought I had to study 4 pages so I waited till the last day but really it was 10 so yeah I'm skrewed

  16. Very good advice. The only problem is I can’t wait 3 days between study sessions of each subject, as I have the same class everyday and would have behind studying the material

  17. My two best strategies in the ANSWER are the Elaboration method(Ask, Explain, Connect) and the Spaced Practice method(No cramming)

  18. Great video! I was semi-listening because just prior to this I was learning about learning styles. About halfway through the video, you shocked me. THIS IS NOT ABOUT LEARNING STYLES. I had to go back and listen all over again to the points that you were making. Thanks for sharing!

  19. So that's what those are called.
    I have been actually doing interleaving. I find it more effective to switch to subjects when studying/reviewing. And also retrieval practice, a technique that I do with this is to teach myself about the lessons. It really helps me a lot when I talk aloud and teach myself about the lessons I'm studying. I find both effective for me, but a bad habit I do is cram because I'm a procrastinator. I'm stressing my brain so much when I cram and use these styles. I'm about to start college soon and I'm definitely changing my habits for the better.

  20. Wow after 2 years he still reads our comments 👍 👍
    Really appreciated and tell us he really care of us 😇😇

  21. Thank you! I agree with all of this. I'm glad some of the things included in the video were the things I did for my current revision. I thought because I wasn't feeling slightly overwhelmed and was more chilled than I used to meant that i wasn't doing enough. But i understand now that it's definitely quality over quantity :)!

  22. While watching it makes me feel like I wanna study right now but I know that Im going to be lazy just after watching
    (=_=)

  23. I've never been aware of my study style or styles rather before i started watching this but reaching the end of the video made me aware that I DO ALL OF THOSE TECHNIQUES DEPENDING ON THE SUBJECTS, it's amazing because IT REALLY DOES WORK!!

  24. I’ve watched many study videos and this is the best. Not only do you talk about the techniques but you also give tips on how to apply them. This is super helpful. Thanks a lot!!

  25. This is really helpful.Amongst all the study videos this is the BEST.
    I have downloaded this videos. Please make more videos about studying.

  26. I’ve always struggled with school because I’ve always felt as if I didn’t know how to study properly. I’m 34 and I’m taking classes at the community college. This is amazing and thank you so much for taking the time to share this sort of information with the world.

  27. That's such a creative way of explaining. I like these kind of videos. And your methods seem promising. Now I should just use them. Thanks.

  28. How about imagining what we study i.e converting words to pictures and vice versa when required to recall pictures to words?

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