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7 Tips to Live Your Best Academic Life

  1. Pick 1 Song and Stick with It

Playing one song during your study session can help improve your study habits. Most people like to listen to music while we study to keep up focused, but sometimes instead of studying, we end up having a concert instead. To fix this, go on Youtube and pick a song on a loop. I recommend picking a song with a chill lo-fi beat so that it is less distracting. Then, when it is time for you to recall the content and focus, just replay the song and it should easily come back to you. You can pick one song for each subject. If you aren’t a fan of music while studying, that’s ok. Just use white noise instead to help focus and block out the sound.

2. Pomodoro Method

If you want to retain information quickly and effectively, the Pomodoro Method is for you. Studies have shown that humans have a max attention span of 45 minutes without breaks. To solve this, the Pomodoro method is about breaks. For short study sessions, do 25 minutes of work and 5 minutes of downtime. If you like longer study periods, do 50 minutes of work and 10 minutes of downtime. To fully disengage from your work during your break, do some physical activity such as walking or stretching and that will lock in everything you just learned.

3. Cumulative Memorization

A method to cram for tests is cumulative memorization. To do this, start with the first paragraph or section of your reading. Read it a few times, then try to recall it from your memory, making sure you understand. As you continue, add new information to what you just learned. Once you remember each section, then add on the next one. This works because it activates your short term memory..

4. Study with Others

If studying alone is not for you, try studying with your friends. You can compare notes from your respective classes and teach each other. Since everyone learns and interprets differently, everyone can learn something new. You can do this in person or on zoom. It also helps with procrastination and gives you the support of others, which is something we all need.

5. Actively Recall Instead of Passively Recalling

If notes don't work for you, try this--instead of creating detailed notes and drawings, create questions to ask yourself about the content. When we spend lots of time on the details, we focus on that instead of the content. This has been proven to be 50% more effective than just passive notes. If you miss any of the questions, highlight them and go through them the next time. A recommended app/ program for this is Notion.

6. Listen Instead of Reading

Some people are visual learners, and some are auditory learners, and that’s ok! so , what do auditory learners do when they have a reading assignment? Simple, turn it into audio. A program called Speechify, a browser extension and an app, turns text into audio. Then, you can listen to what you have to read, and the information is easier to remember and recall.

7. Use a Planner Instead of Trying to Remember Everything

Finally, use a planner instead of trying to remember everything on your own. Yes our memory is strong, but by the end of the day we are tired and can barely what we learned at the beginning

of the day. If you are a paper person, then use a planner with a horizontal student layout, so there is room for everything. If you are more of a digital person, use an app like Egenda or Google calendar, which can send reminders to your respective device. That way, all you work will get done, and your brain won’t work so hard trying to remember it all.

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