My Best Studying Tactics

Eric Kolb on Tuesday, 18 September 2018. Posted in Coursework, Libraries, Student Life

My Best Studying Tactics

Hi guys! Every single person will have to figure out your best strategies for studying while at RIT, and there are many different tactics that people use to study. Here are a few of the things I do to study for quizzes and exams!

Walk Around

My biggest studying tactic (if I’m alone and no one is there to judge me) is to walk around my room or wherever I’m studying. I have my notebook in hand and whatever else I need to study the subject, and I just walk in a circle while I read or recite what I’m memorizing or practicing. This keeps my blood flowing and keeps me focused. This might seem kind of weird, but it works for me, and actually helps me remember things better! Any sort of movement besides walking could potentially be a good way to remember material as well, and it's a great way to stay awake during late night study sessions!

Say Things Out Loud

While I’m walking around in circles, I like to recite whatever I’m studying out loud. If I’m memorizing something, I say it repeatedly out loud (softly if I’m in public). If I’m doing a problem, I repeat the steps to solve the problem until I can remember it without even thinking. Hearing it out loud gives me a different source of input besides just reading it, and it keeps it in my brain for longer. Sometimes saying them to others and explaining a problem to another person can help too.

Do Practice Problems

Especially for me in an engineering program, we usually get practice exams, problems in class, or homework problems that will be very similar to what will end up being on the test. Doing these problems again can really help them stick in your brain. Another benefit from redoing problems is that many professors will reuse problems for their exams and just change the numbers, so you could potentially redo a problem from your homework the day before an exam, and then have that same problem be on the exam the next day! Also, if a professor gives a practice exam or review sheet, USE IT. Every time I have had review packet there have been at least a few problems that were exaclty from it on the exam!

Work with Friends

The absolute best studying for me, especially on engineering problems, is working with my friends. We meet up in one of the empty classrooms on campus (booking a study room in the Library is a great alternative) after classes are over and write everything we know down. We pick a room with a ton of whiteboards so we have lots of room to write everything down. We choose one to write down topics and definitions, and the rest we reserve for practice problems. We do every problem we think will be involved on the exam and help each other to answer questions and find answers. Being able to bounce ideas off people and ask questions is extremely helpful! Also, answering questions and helping others makes me remember the problems and material more than I would just doing them myself. This is always done last after everyone has had time to do some preliminary studying, and this time is for last minute practice and questions.

These are just a few of the things I do when I’m studying for exams! Like I said before, everyone studies differently, and these may not work for you. These are especially helpful for an engineering program, so I would give them a shot if you are an engineer! The best thing you can do to successfully study in any class or major is to start early. Cramming the day before almost never works, so even just looking at the material a few days before for an hour can really help.

Happy studying!