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Effective Studying

Updated: Aug 24, 2021

Everybody learns differently, this means that finding your optimal method of studying is a key aspect to the success of your studies.

Here is a list of scientifically proven methods of studying that have helped me and countless others improve our understanding of our studies and furthermore the grades we are receiving:

The curve of forgetting is a concept which explores the retention of information the day after initially studying it. It has been found in scientific studies that through reviewing the information within 24 hours your retention of what you learnt jumps to 80%. This is also cumulative and the effects can be seen in the graph here.

Active recall is another method of absorbing information through the stimulation of the brain during the learning process. Active recall is in its roots, the questioning of the information you’re learning as you learn it. For example as opposed to passively reading something, as you read question key aspects of what you need to know without the text in front of you. This method of learning is great for storing information in your long-term memory and is scientifically proven to improve results. Using flashcards is a good way of utilising this method.

The Feynman technique was developed by physicist Richard Feynman who was awarded a Nobel Prize and the nickname “The Great Explainer.” This method is derived from the understanding required to teach a concept.

Writing the name of the concept you want to commit to memory on a page.

Explaining the concept as if you were teaching is to someone who has never seen the concept before using a limited vocabulary.Reviewing your explanation and identifying weaknesses in it. If you have holes in your explanation then refer to your information source and learn what you have missed.

Finally you need to rewrite your explanation and fill in the holes. You can add diagrams, formulas any method of explanation as long as it is simple.

Metacognition or ‘thinking about thinking,’ is a method known to heighten your thinking and allow you to understand your own thought processes about a concept. Metacognition allows you to know your own capabilities and evaluate the position of your own learning, helping you organise and retain what you need to know through the what seems like the simple understanding of your own thoughts.

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