Between multiple classes, studying for exams, and writing essays, college life can be hectic and stressful. But it doesn’t have to be! Study sessions don’t have to involve last-minute cramming and pulling all-nighters. A few positive changes can make all the difference.
1.) Find your ideal study spot
The key to a successful study session is finding a space that works best for you. If you like a quiet, relaxing location, you should seek out a spot in your campus library or maybe even peaceful scenery outside. Pack all you need in your backpack and explore the grounds of your campus. Find somewhere relaxing like near a pond or on the quad. I went to school upstate, so there were a lot of serene study spots to find with great views overlooking the mountains. If you prefer being indoors, but still want a quiet environment, you can look for a lesser-known student lounge. Bring your iPad or tablet and get some reading done in between classes.
Studying doesn’t need to be confined to campus. Some people, like myself, enjoy studying and writing in a busier environment such as a cafe or coffeehouse with a relaxing vibe. There’s nothing wrong with being a coffeehouse-dweller, so get connected to Wi-Fi, and set yourself up with your books and laptop. Then some good music (and a good latte, of course) is all you need to get into a productive groove. But wherever you may wander, don’t forget to bring along your flash drive to back up all your work.
2.) Create a soothing environment
If you don’t feel like searching for the perfect study spot, you can make one right where you are by tweaking your space to fit all your needs. First, make sure your room is comfortable and doesn’t have any distractions. Shut your TV off if it’s going to bother you, close the shades if the sun is glaring, and turn your desk lamp on so you can see your notes clearly. Whether it be a futon, your bed, or at your desk in a supportive chair, study wherever you find it to be most comfortable. Also, using essential oils can be therapeutic and soothing while you’re studying.
3.) Listen to music
You can also put some music on if you find it helps you with productivity and concentration. Try out all different genres like classical or jazz to see what you like listening to most while studying… you may surprise yourself! A Bluetooth speaker is perfect for listening to music on the go. If you want to chill in your dorm, you can use your iPod so you don’t distract your roommate.
4.) Study buddies
Tired of boring study sessions? Prepping for an exam with a friend or a group of friends could make all the difference. Go to the library or a local café with some of your classmates. Quizzing each other makes studying a lot more enjoyable, and you might not even feel like you’re doing homework. If you’re working in your dorm, there’s no need to huddle around a laptop; you can all sit comfortably on a futon while viewing your notes on the TV with an HDMI cable.
5.) Plan in advance
Waiting until the last minute can ruin a study session and makes it more stressful than it needs to be. If you’re organized and prep for your exams in advance, study sessions can be a breeze with some review. If you’re taking a lot of classes at once, due dates can be overwhelming. Writing out all of your deadlines in your phone or planner is helpful; that way you won’t accidentally miss anything. It’s also a good idea to start prepping for any exams you may have ahead of time. Make your study sessions pleasant instead of pulling all-nighters or cramming minutes before your exam.
Bonus: If you have any research papers this semester, it’s never too early to start researching. After all, a rushed paper is never a good paper. It takes time for ideas to develop, and you’ll want to let that happen naturally. It also may take some time to find all the books you need, so be sure to give yourself ample time. This will allow you to explore your topic and enjoy the process.
Just a few small changes could really enhance your study sessions. All of your hard work will pay off when it comes time to take your exam or turn in your paper. Good luck this semester!
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