Studying 101: the Dos and Don’ts

Everyone needs to study at some point in his or her lives. But what use is studying if there are too many outlying factors or distractions? Here are some simple dos and don’ts for the studying student.

Do:

Find your perfect atmosphere

Whether in a library, classroom, or your local coffee shop, finding the perfect atmosphere for studying makes learning and understanding the material much easier. Sometimes people can study in groups to help each other understand material, but sometimes studying is better done alone for the purpose of focusing and finishing in a timely manner.

 

Don’t: 

Surround yourself with distracting people

It’s always fun to spend time with friends, but sometimes they can be more distraction than assistance. When the need for extensive studying comes about, be sure to eliminate all major distractions. Even if you love hearing about everyone’s school or work drama, it’ll still be there when you finish studying.

Do:

Listen to soft music

Find a genre of music that suits your interests but also that lacks the factor of distraction. Some articles say that Disney music is perfect for studying because its rhythmic movement through lyrics and musicality is less distracting than other forms of music. Personally, I’m much too big of a Disney fan to listen to Disney music while studying, but I do have a music style that keeps me focused while I’ve got my nose in my books.

 

Don’t:

Listen to loud, distracting music

Though it may be fun to listen to your favorite song at mach 10 while trying to study, there’s probably a few times where the lyrics put you in a karaoke kind of mood. It may seem alright at the time, but by listening to overly loud music or music that can distract you, the effects of your studying diminish. I’m not saying you won’t get any studying done, but it’ll be much less than if you were to listen to other kinds of music.

 

Do:

Sit at a desk

With the right chair and lighting, a desk can be the most comfortable yet thought-provoking place for the working mind. Studying takes a bunch of energy, and making sure that there is a set place to study is a great way to make sure the work gets done without making the studier miserable.

 

Don’t:

Sit near your bed

This is one of the biggest don’t’s for studying that could ever exist. Sitting near a bed is the most tempting distraction that we can succumb to. Thinking about the wonderful nap you could be taking or how tired studying makes you or even sitting in bed wondering how much longer you will be studying are all reasons to stay away from a bed while cracking the books.

 

Do:

Organize what you need to study

For all of the professional organizers, your expertise is extremely useful here. By finding a rhythm to your own study needs and organizing on what you need to spend time and how much time to spend on it, your studying will not only be easier and less stressful, but it will also help time management and understanding how to use your time. For me, I know I need more time to study for classes like my law class or my sciences than I do for my writing or english classes, but everyone is different. Organizing your study materials is a great way to study more effectively.

 

Don’t:

 

 

 

Try to do everything at once

Sometimes I think I’m superwoman and can do everything I need to do at one time. Fact check—I can’t. Some assignments or exams require more time for preparing, so trying to switch back and forth to and from assignments is a deterrence in actually remembering the information. For example, if you’re researching for an English paper and studying for a Social Studies exam at the same time, you might end up getting events confused or concentrating too hard to focus on one or the other.