We are finally more than halfway through the first sub-session of this academic year and getting closer to winter break. Now with blended learning, the returning of more face-to-face teaching and getting back to having a demanding day-to-day routine, studying becomes more of a chore while the days go by, trust me I feel like that too. Even if you already have an idea of your preferred ways to study and what suits your needs, there are various creative ways to study and compromise into your newly found routine. As a third-year student I have discovered by trial-and-error various creative methods to study that I’d love to recommend, especially if you have just started university. Here are some unique useful tips, ideas, links to online resources, that can assist you make studying more enjoyable.
For the times that you have been studying lecture notes for hours and days or spent the longest time preparing for an essay, and the information just can’t stay with you, you should try teaching the topic to someone. You can try this method with both people who are proficient on the topic or your friends and family who will definitely want to help you with your courses. Explaining the material and making sure to be verbally cohesive will help you to identify any potential knowledge gaps and study them more.
Don’t worry, if you don’t feel comfortable with explaining to others but you want to try this method, it’s okay, you can try speaking in front of a mirror to yourself.
Try a change
The simplest way to get creative is by trying changes. A different pen, a typing font or even a highlighter colour will give you something new to look to that is not a part of routine. Depending on your preferred method of studying even the smallest change will have a big impact as it will enhance your ability to memorise and focus.
Study with strangers
I know the title might sound confusing but as during the past couple of years, we all moved to working from home and limited face to face classes, it was not always possible to arrange studying sessions with your friends or be able socialise. Many online study spaces such as Study Together, that have been developed ever since that allow you to study with strangers. Studying with someone you do not know might not only help you make a new friend but also focus better and be less distracted. The best part about online spaces is that they are available 24/7 so they are available to fit all schedules.
Become a designer
Yes, the lecture already contains a lot of graphs and information, but have you considered that yours can be much better? Adding your own key information, explanations, sketching and creating knowledge webs will help you build a strong image of the key points you want to learn. Once you know the basic material you can continue by adding details and become proficient.
Breaks can be fun
Studying for an assessment of writing all day can be very draining so when its finally time to take a break all you want to do is rest. Breaks are very important when studying so try to make the most out of them and try taking time of looking at screens. Doing something creative like reading or drawing will help you focus back to your work faster and keep you more energetic.
Hopefully there was something on the list that you want to try or inspired you to find your own new creative way to study. Remember to take time off, make your studying sessions enjoyable and creative and produce the results that you work hard to achieve.
Remember the University also offers study support, check out the StudyWell pages here.