How do you prepare for each semester? For most people, its enjoying the time off and waiting last minute to immerse in their studies. For some, planning is a big part. Here are a few tips that have actually saved me from the craziness of working while in grad school that will help you improve your study skills.
I know you’re probably dreading the start of the semester. However, looking over the materials at least one week ahead will help you get ahead of everything. Staying ahead keeping organized and being prepared will help you immensely in this task. Making this as one of your study habits will gradually help you in preparation for the upcoming semester and for future ones to come.
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5 Habits to begin for a successful semester and improve your study skills
1. Get your materials ready even if you don’t study,
You can print everything and arrange them in a binder, just so you are organized. No need to actually read or study at this time. You are just organizing and getting your ducks in a row. This will eliminate the running around looking for things that will waste your much-needed energy.
2. Next is to go over the syllabus and identify or mark projects and activities.
The object here is to get your mindset ready for any big papers or projects. You want to eliminate any surprises during the semester. If your school has a student system online, this will be helpful especially if they will list all the projects and activities you will encounter this semester. Reading articles online from people who went through the same syllabus will also help you gain advanced knowledge about it.
3. Get a calendar.
Write down right when exams are due, then backtrack to a few weeks prior and schedule study time for that exam to include the topics even page numbers over to study for. You may prepare test questions for you to challenge yourself and improve your study skills.
Admit it. Students tend to procrastinate sometimes, especially if you aren’t interested in the class. Using time management techniques and time management tools will help you lessen procrastination. It may even help you with organizing your materials and daily to-do activities as well as improve your productivity.
4. Look for any big papers that need to be written.
Again, you are eliminating any surprises. Knowing you have a big paper coming is one thing, but lining up a good project partner is another. If you need to find a partner go ahead and use this time to look ahead.
5. Look at the syllabus again.
Look to see which ones they are the biggest percentage of your grade. If it is a big project or a paper start your outline and begin getting things in line for that project. This will prevent you from rushing or panicking last minute and then trying to study for an exam. I know how hard or difficult it can be to juggle many things especially if you have a child to care for or work to attend to. Trying to chip away one thing at a time before things get busy will be valuable for you during this task.
Now that you’ve lined up your school work, time to look at other things that can affect your time.
Make sure you have enough supplies for your studies such as ink, paper, highlighters, pens, and binders. This will eliminate extra trips to the store which just eats away your time. You need to remember to indulge in anytime saving measures. Any free time you have can be better spent either studying taking care of yourself for spending time with family. Don’t forget a good printer.
School Prep for Moms
For moms, it would behoove you to have help set up. Such as babysitters daycare. Make note of how early you can drop off your child I’ll let you can pick them up until your study time I work time with daycare hours.
Check out this perfect MOM Planner.
You need proper sustenance while you’re in this program. As tempting as it is to live on soda and junk food which by the way your body might crave during times of stress. Taking time to prepare your meals and placing them in divided containers can be of immense help. A simple lunch bag can be by your side with your healthy snacks. Your new system will benefit if you have the proper supplementation proper food, snacks, while you were studying all while you are rushing to either get to work or pick up your child.
Schedule family time and time for yourself.
I know how it is to want to spend every waking moment I’m serving the material and doing your best to get good grades or pass your program. However, resolving to take one day off a week not to think about school or even look at your books will be good for your mental health.
Have appointments done before you start the semester.
Appointment such as dental appointments for yourself, and any other household or family appointments that you think might need to be done prior to the start of the semester. This will eliminate stress from you taking time away from your studies to for you to go to your appointments. Keep your Mom Binder handy so you can have all the information ready.
Know you’re learning style.
If you are a visual learner audio learner etc. know where you learn best if you’re able to learn in a quiet corner of your house and not be distracted good for you. If you are the type that needs to be somewhere away from everything, you need a distraction-free zone. Know your library hours or look for a coffee shop where you can park yourself have a good set of noise canceling headphones and study. If you don’t like the bulk of headphone, a good pair of earbuds will work as well.
Be prepared for a successful semester
Even so, highly successful students, may it be in high school or in college, reward yourself by providing your body with the right amount of sleep, good and nutritious food and learn about the art of 80/20 rule. With the right amount of these points, you will be able to work around and go through all the way at the end of every semester.
Somewhere along the way, if you do get overwhelmed, please engage in self-care. Something as simple as taking a walk or jogging once a week. If you need to delve into a deeper course to build your resilience and help with self-care. Check out this out course on Mindfulness and Resilience.
In summary, your best tools before you start the semester or one big calendar big monthly calendar so you can map out exams due dates study times. Different tools are available online that will help you improve your study skills and be comfortable as you finish your semester.