Study Skills to Make You an Expert in High School
Breezing through high school involves finding the perfect balance between studies, extra curricular activities, and social obligations. There are a few tried and tested techniques that have always proved effective for learning and can help you achieve that balance.
Tips to Improve High School Study Skills
Create a Schedule
The primary step to effective studying is to make a schedule and follow it. This will include allocating how many hours and which part of the day you will spend studying. Among the vital factors for students, is the ability to prepare a schedule that takes into consideration the time you will spend doing assignments or homework, as well as manage to include some real study time over and above this. Try to ensure that your study time takes place after you have rested, so that you are fresh, alert, and are able to absorb what you study. You will also see that studying at the same time every day will help you to focus and concentrate better. It is also a good practice to study the same portion that was covered in class during the day, as it will be fresh in your mind. It is also important to keep revising this schedule, to make it more effective over time.
Where to Study
It is important to pick a place to study that will help you concentrate. Any place rife with distractions will cause you to waste a significant part of your study time. The spot you pick to study should be austere, without the presence of any jarring colors, pictures, or loud sounds. Apart from the place you pick at home, libraries, study lounges, and private rooms are also good options.
Another key step in creating good study material is to compress a portion of information to about one-third of its original size, including only the important dates. This method, that also applies to study skills for middle school, makes reviewing and revising very easy.
Survey, Question, Read, Recite, and Review
High school as well as middle school study skills include this method; often referred to as SQ3R. The first step is to survey and involves chalking out all that needs to be covered (make subheads and points) and getting a general understanding of the subject. Next, you can categorize material and learn it as answers to questions such as what, why, how, when, who and where. As you study, ask yourself questions and seek the answers in your material. You are more likely to remember it using this method. You can also make your notes following this format. The next crucial step is reading, which must not be a mechanical process, but a receptive one. Ensure that you include tables, graphs, and illustrations, while reading. The next step is reciting which will tell you how effective your reading has been. One way to do it is read one section, and then explain it to yourself (without looking at your book), to check how much you have retained. The importance of doing this is that information is better retained in your own words. If you have sorted the information into main headings and sub points, they will come in handy here, as they pop up in your head while you are recalling, and help you piece together all that you have read. The last step, reviewing, is often the most important one. It is often said that information that appears before us a few times, gets transferred from our temporary memory to our permanent one. One needs to review and revise any material about three times, before it firmly takes root in our minds.
Apart from these study tips, you can come up with several of your own study skills for school. By making good notes, you’ve won half the battle. Highlighting important text in books has also proved helpful. However, you should know that elementary school study skills, such as reading aloud, have been proved ineffective. Reading aloud or moving your lips while reading, only slows you down. Lastly, remember that time is the most valuable resource you have. All the techniques and study skills will amount to nothing, if you don’t use your time wisely.