1) Find a note-taking strategy that works for you
- Note-taking Strategies from Collegeboard.com
- Cornell Note-Taking System
- If your instructor allows, record the lectures. You can listen to lectures later and fill-in anything that you may have missed. Recorders are available for check-out from the Equipment Room. Recording lectures is not an excuse to not listen
- Taking notes with a laptop is a fast and neat way of organizing your notes, if you keep them neat and organized. Practice good file management and make clear folder names. Save all notes in the same place if you are using separate documents for each day. Include the date and class in the body of your notes too.
- If you are using a laptop to take notes, do not become distracted by the internet, applications, or games. Do not allow yourself to be distracted. Disable your wireless connection; create another profile with limited application access; only keep Word or TextEdit open, nothing else!
Chris Pirillo on How to Take Notes in School
2) Scheduling study time, deadlines, group work sessions are critical to build good work habits
- How to Take on College Studying
- Time Management Tips for Students
- 8 Time Management Skills for College Students
- If you have time between lecture and lab, use that time for reviewing or studying.
- Information retention drops every day after you’ve learned something. Review every day to keep the information fresh
- If you are in an online class, integrate assignments into your daily routine. For instance, if you get up to check Facebook, you might as well log in to class. If you are going to watch YouTube videos, do it after you’ve completed that day’s task. Better yet, make www.expressiononline.com your home page!
3) Ask questions either in class or during office hours – get clarity so that you can study effectively
- In your notes, mark down where you have questions or any info you may have missed
- Formulate your question first before you ask your instructor
- Highlight your instructor’s contact information on the syllabus or write it on the first day of notes
4) Predict questions that will be raised during class discussions or on exams – prepare answers
- Keep the syllabus in a safe place and read it over to prep for the next day
- If there is assigned reading, skim over it to see what the main points may be. This is most handy in textbooks and manuals
- Take note of anything that is written on the board or has its own slide in the presentation
- Work with classmates to see what they think are the major points and compare and quiz each other
5) Find/create a focused work area that is free of distractions: music, text messages, bills, excessive noise, etc.
- Keep your work area clean and only with the essential materials
- Choose a time you know will be quiet and stick to it
- Distractions can lead to procrastination!
Tales of Mere Existence: “Procrastination” by Lev Yilmaz
Managing your personal life and school life.
Time management is only part of managing yourself. Other things affect school, such as family, friends, relationships, work, etc. Keep focused on your main goals and keep your priorities straight. Ex’pression is a fast-paced college and things can get piled on. Maintain communication with the people in your life and let them know what’s going on.
What’s a Learning Style?
Most people have a way of learning that is best for them. Common learning styles include auditory, visual, and tactile learners. There are some free online Learning Style quizzes and tests, but still try different study methods to find what works best for you.
One example of a Learning styles quiz.
Other tips from EducationPlanner.org.