How do top students study?

We see these students at every school, in every singly class; students who seem to effortlessly get high marks after high marks and we can’t help but wonder “how to they do that?” It may look like an easy feat but what we don’t know is that these students have mastered study tips and strategies which help them achieve their brilliant results.

Tip #1. Making plans
As a term progresses, plans help students keep track of key dates such as tests, presentations and assignment submission deadlines, which allows them to be aware of events at a quick glance. Consistently scheduling time to work on different subjects provides an overview of students’ study routines in a week and pushes them to prioritise efficiency in a steady manner rather than in randomised bursts of energy.

Tip #2. Focus
Focusing on the task at hand is another very important skill that top students have mastered. These students don’t waste time scrolling through their Instagram or Facebook feeds, but take advantage of the power of focus to maximise their efficiency and output. Software that blocks internet connection to distracting sites such as YouTube, Twitter and Buzzfeed are very useful, including Self Control and Stay Focusd. Distractions may seem small, like a quick notification from the 7News app but as these piles up, it steals hours of study time. Studies have shown that the human brain takes around 23 minutes to refocus once interrupted.

Tip #3. Think critically
The best students are engaged in class and with study materials or homework. They are constantly asking themselves the question ‘why’. Actively seeking answers to these questions is the best way to retain information by searching on Google for relevant statistics and reports helps students to process their learning in a more profound way.

Tip #4. Balance
Just as important as we think completing homework and studying for exams are, focusing on health by exercising and eating regular and nutritious meals is also just as crucial. Exercise enhances the memory, focuses the brain and augments thinking abilities. It also improves sleep patterns and helps in reducing stress and anxiety, which allow for a heightened long- term cognitive ability.

Tip #5. Constant revision
Have you ever noticed that in the short period of the school holidays you’ve already forgotten what you’ve learnt? Top students revise constantly by using active revision strategies. Rather than just looking over their notes and past papers, students should make regularly make summaries, testing themselves and by teaching their classmates and friends. Revision before exams can also boost confidence and reduce anxiety.

Developing regular and efficient study routines and habits not only increase productivity and results, but also reduces the stress and anxiety that are often associated with cramming and last-minute revision. Learning and studying is definitely hard work so it’s also very important to look after yourself and have time to pursue hobbies and recreational activities. Without a doubt, this hard work will pay off!

By Katherine Bai

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