How to Improve Your Study Skills: Tips for Students

how to improve your study skills tips for studentsStandardized testing time is right around the corner, and if you have struggled with studying these next few months will offer up a great opportunity to make helpful changes to your studying habits. Many students who perform well with homework and tests share common study skills. What they do in class and after school positively affect how well they retain information later.

Test Prep and Homework Tips for Students

Tips for Studying in Class

There are quite a few things that you can do in class to improve your studying habits.Parent Tip to Improve Study Skills 1

  • Distractions: Distractions in class can range from distracting yourself to being distracted by others. Sometimes letting your mind wander can help you feel relaxed, but later on, when it’s time to review notes or think about what you’ve learned, the things that distracted you in class are the only things you remember.
    • Avoiding Distractions: To avoid distractions, sit as close to the front row of the class as possible. Although you may feel that you’ll get chosen to answer more questions, this is a good opportunity to check what you can remember about the lesson.
  • Notes: Other than handouts and a book, you’ll use your notes to study at home. If you don’t take good notes, then you’ll be out of luck when it’s time to study for quizzes and tests later on.
    • Taking Great Notes: To improve your note-taking in class, remember to
      • be consistent and organize your notes clearly,
      • take notes so that when you read through them, you’ll understand or remember what you learned,
      • and review your notes from class that evening or the next day.
  • Attentiveness: It’s important to engage in class discussions and pay attention to what your teacher presents.
    • Improve Attentiveness: You can improve your attentiveness by listening to the teacher, reading all of the notes, and asking questions to clear up anything that confuses you.

These tips can help you if you don’t understand how best to learn in class. There are also things that you can do at home to make studying and retaining information easier.

Parent Tip: Encourage your child to use learning tools like mnemonics, flash cards, and online quizzes.

Tips for Studying at Home

Parent Tip to Improve Study Skills 2Not only can you improve how you learn at school, you can also improve your studying habits at home. Making a few adjustments to how you study at home can help you understand and retain more information from what you learned at school.

  • Know what to expect for class. Remember to ask questions about things you didn’t quite understand in class and things you want to know about upcoming tests.
  • Prepare before studying. If you review your notes before doing homework, then you’ll be able to complete homework with less difficulty. This is a good reason why you should write your notes in a consistent and organized way.
  • Put yourself on a schedule. If you know that you are going to spend an hour every evening studying, then it will become part of your routine, and you’ll be less likely to spend late evening hours cramming before a quiz or a test.

Parent Tip to Improve Study Skills 3Give yourself a break. If you need to study for a long period, then give yourself a break in the middle. The time away from your study desk will help you feel refreshed and re-energized for the rest of the time.

Don’t procrastinate. Lots of things can get in the way of studying. If you have a lot of homework to get done, or if you know you have a test coming up, don’t put off studying.

Choose the study setting that works best for you. Some students need to have absolute silence when studying and others need some background noise to keep from getting distracted. Whatever works best for you is the setting you should study in every time you study.

Tips for Studying in Groups

Parent Tip to Improve Study Skills 1Although taking great notes at school, paying attention in class, and being consistent with studying at home can improve your studying and learning abilities, sometimes you may need an extra boost to make the best of your studying time.     

  • Work with a tutor. If you have access to a tutor at school or home – a teacher or a sibling – then you may always have a resources for improving your studying. If you don’t have a sibling who can help you with studying, or if your teacher does not have tutoring hours, then you may want to get enrolled in an afterschool enrichment program.
  • Work with your friends and classmates. You can form a study group with friends or students in an enrichment program who share similar learning goals. Friends in a study group can help, encourage, and challenge you to reach your learning goals.

What are some things that you do or have done to improve your study habits?

Author: Nicole Acevedo, Teacher Manager at A Grade Ahead

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