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5 Great and Effective Study Tips

Authored By: 
Ian Rusten, History Teacher

As a teacher, I am obliged to give exams regularly.  But, I recognize that learning how to study for an exam is no easy task. Here are 5 key S.T.U.D.Y. tips to keep in mind when preparing for a test, however big or small. 


Does the all-nighter really work? Can you cram a unit’s worth of material into your brain the night before an exam? No, and in fact, it will often backfire. Pulling an all-nighter will defeat the purpose of studying when you have no energy to think the next day.

Take your time and pace yourself

Don’t leave studying to the last minute. Spread it out over a few days and let yourself gradually absorb the material. This gives you time to check with your teacher about any misunderstandings and it also lets you use the last day before an exam for reinforcement of learning and not new learning.

Use all available resources

Don’t be afraid to ask peers and teachers for help. Find a classmate or two and determine each of your strengths, then teach and reteach each other the material. Quiz each other. In addition, taking the time to ask teachers for help will strengthen your relationships with teachers, helping you to get to know each other.

Develop a deep understanding of the material

Make sure you understand the material in depth. Don’t just recall the facts or information. You should be able to teach the material or explain the concepts to someone else. In fact, try it! Take the time to try and explain the material to a receptive audience.

Yes, it’s okay at times to take a break and walk away for a bit

If you feel saturated, put it away and take a break for a few hours or even until the next day when you are rejuvenated. However, you can only do this if you give yourself enough time to prepare.  Good luck!

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