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In serious need of that GPA boost? Check out these study tips

If you're in a study slump now that midterms are over, turn to these tips to get you through the rest of the semester. – Photo by Iewek Gnos / Unsplash

There are things we all can agree would be beneficial in the long run but just can’t ever bring ourselves to do consistently enough that it would positively impact our lives.

You might think: “Aw man, I should really remember to floss every day.” And yeah, you definitely should, but are you going to? No. You’re going to brush your teeth, but that’s more out of a desire to avoid a state of constant morning breath than fear of gingivitis. Or maybe you wonder, “Wow, when was the last time I read a book?” I don’t know, but chances are, it’s not about to change anytime soon.

I’m as guilty of this as the next wannabe journalist. I have just as many “shoulds” as anyone else, but for today, I’d like to focus on a particularly relevant activity given midterm season is more or less over by this point. Everyone’s gearing up to finish their semester out on a strong note: “I should really study more.”

But studying’s hard. Take it from me, I barely touch the stuff. But if I did, here are some things I’d want to keep in mind to get the most out of each study session.

Don’t cram

Chances are if you're reading this article, it's already too late to heed this particular warning. But it might do you well to keep in mind the old adage about the equivalency between an ounce of prevention and a pound of cure.

Much like physical exercises, studying has been shown to be the most effective when performed in smaller, consistent efforts, where you can spend more time on specific aspects of your studies that may confuse you, as opposed to trying to learn all of Algebra I in one sitting.

If you do have to cram, cram smart

Allen F. Morgenstern once said that we should strive to work smarter as opposed to harder, so in that spirit, be as efficient as you can when trying to transport information from the paper to your brain.

Do you have notes? Use them to help organize a timeline of each chapter and identify areas where you may need some additional assistance understanding the material.

Use the internet

We live in an age where we can connect with millions of people at the push of a button, meaning it's never been an easier time to share information. With the advent of websites like Chegg, Quora and especially Quizlet, just because you personally may not have come up with the best study tools, it's almost a certainty that somebody else has. And not only have they made a comprehensive review of whatever you're looking to learn, but they've also uploaded it to a format that allows it to be used by people just like you.

Quizlet is especially good in this regard, as it allows you to not only see the study sets created by students studying the same topics as you, but it also allows you to review the material in any number of ways. This makes the learning process as painless (and maybe even enjoyable) as possible.

Make friends in your class

This is just some solid advice regardless of the context. Friends are pretty cool — they listen to you talk about your stupid interests and make you feel a little less alone in the world, but they can be especially helpful if they share a class with you.

Although Quizlet may let you view study sets from people all over the world, you unfortunately won't gain any friends on its website. While it may lead to a less quality study aid (depending on the studiousness of your friend), I still urge you to get friendly with at least a few people in your class — because there are some things Quizlet can't clue you in on, such as when you missed some important news one particular day of class.


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