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What are the best 10 study tips for college?

I see ads for things like study music, study skills handbook, study skills course, study guide for various textbooks and many others. Is it not enough to study subjects taught in high school? Students have so many other things to buy, should they also buy these study strategies courses? Do they work? Of the top 5 and 10 lists of study tips for college, which do you recommend, if any? How can college students develop good study skills? Does learning how to study cost money, or are free online courses enough?

James Washington

in Studying

1 answer

1 answer

Victoria Fowler on July 11, 2018

Studying is individual. My number one study tip for college would be “it depends on you.” College is where people learn how to be responsible for their own lives and it includes knowing when to seek help.

Study skills courses are optional. Some good ones can be found on school websites free for the downloading. Others are well-written books you might want to read. You’ve probably seen ads for the Palgrave Study Skills (brand) “Study Skills Handbook” by Stella Cottrell. An alternative that’s also well rated on Amazon is Sarah Moore et al.’s “Ultimate Study Skills Handbook.” There are many others. These books discuss things like career planning, time management, reading, note taking, analysis, memory, mathematics, teamwork, writing, research, and test taking. Other books and online documents explore one or more of these topics in more detail.

Since you’ve asked, my remaining nine tips for freshmen might be these:

  1. Stay healthy. Balance your diet, exercise, and rest to optimize mental alertness.
  2. Avoid distractions like quarrels, unnecessary debts, violations of the law, etc.
  3. If you have trouble with reading, writing, arithmetic, or the English language, or if you have a disability, get the help you need.
  4. Begin studying for an exam when you buy a textbook. Go to classes. Take notes.
  5. Explore a range of study techniques: reading, listening, writing, speaking, mapping, diagramming, memorizing, creating and others. Supplement the ones you find hard to use with the ones that come easily. If listening to lectures or watching videos puts you to sleep, taking notes may be more effective than caffeine to keep you awake.
  6. Use answer keys, study questions, and other helpful material a teacher may provide.
  7. Overcome shyness about presentations. They’re an important learning strategy.
  8. Learn to read and discuss the material that you don’t understand or agree with. Education involves learning to follow the thought processes of people who worshipped the moon or killed animals for sport, rather than being overwhelmed by emotional reactions.
  9. Refer to your class notes in writing projects, so your best writing won’t be suspected of plagiarism.

These good studying skills are really effective but it depends on you whether you will develop them or not. You just have to do something in order to achieve something. 

Ronald Miller11 months ago

It surprises me that many lists of study tips for college don’t include health, rest, and nutrition. That’s really important to have a good health to study well. In communities with a lot of poverty and alcoholism, low average test scores are obtained. Nutrient imbalances, including dehydration, lower concentration and memory influence test scores. So, for the best possible scores on exams, feed your body well! But don’t forget about your brain. It’s essential to havebalanve everywhere. 

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