Tips to Study Faster and Effectively

Every one of us might have experienced time and again that we are too close to the upcoming exam to prepare well for it. When there is plenty of time, we often keep on procrastinating. Even the things which we are not interested about start becoming more interesting and we lose our time simply doing nothing.

This time pressure is especially seen in medical and dental students who have to take hours long lectures daily along with the laboratory exercises and case studies to complete.
The assignments and seminars on the top of that makes everybody feel like it is never possible to prepare thoroughly for the exams. But that is not always the case. Those academic achievers are also like us and they also feel the same way about the time constraint. What makes the difference is that they study effectively as compared to others that makes them “The Outliers”.

It is observable that toppers don’t study much more than they are supposed to. You might have been astonished many times because the same friend who used to bunk classes with you and be with you most of the times topped the semester and you nearly failed. Let’s see some of the key tips you’d like to take care for when you prepare for exam next time.

1. Know the Syllabus , Exam Pattern and tentative exam date beforehand

Many of us might have already experienced the horrible situation when we are skimping through the syllabus the night before the exam. That’s a really pitiful condition. We should be well aware about the syllabus , types of questions , number of questions , whether there will be choices or all the questions are compulsory, the questions will be subjective or objective, whether there will be negative markings for wrong answers or not ( for MCQs), time duration of exam, how much time have you got to prepare before exam etc. Though these things seem inconsequential, they play a key role in your scores.

2. Know what not to read

Most of the students make mistake here at this point. It is as important to know what not to read as it is what to read. All the things in your syllabus are not that important and they are not likely to appear in exam. Some things are only to be kept in mind for clearing the previous misconceptions whereas some things are to be stored in your long term memory. It's true that , "A fine racer knows when to slow down, a fine surgeon knows when not to cut and a fine student knows what not to read". Be selective about what you are storing and what you need to omit. If you intend to gobble all those extraneous details, then you will suffer the same fate as a glutton who tries to eat more than he can digest and suffers from diarrhea, indigestion or at least a bloated stomach. Don’t let your brain bloat due to overloading of unnecessary information.

3. Make realistic goals

We know our preparation level and how much effort we need to make to get our goal. We don’t need to seek any expert’s counselling or take any medical tests to determine our level of preparation. So, we should make realistic goals without trying to fool ourselves. You know the result what may happen when a student who failed this semester starts making plans to top the next semester. The goals should be attainable, tempting you to do the hard work but not that high that you might burn out.

4.Know that it’s easier to win the race if you start earlier than your competitors

The sooner the preparation, the better it is. So, start before you feel under pressure. But, No need to worry if you think you’re late for adequate preparation. Gather past questions of last 5-6 years and go through it. You’ll get a good idea what is more likely to come in exam and what is not. Researches suggest that around sixty to seventy percent of questions in exams are those that have been already asked if your University/Institute is at least a decades old. Odds are high that the percentage of past questions can go even higher for old institutes.

5.Study regularly and keep away the distractors

It does not cut any ice if you read for straight 12 hours for seven days and fall again back to your previous schedule of luxury for next three months. Be consistent in your study schedule , and keep those mobile games, facebook, email, youtube and television away from you while studying.

6. Practice Speedreading and make notes for faster revision

Studying your own notes builds up your confidence in such a way that you will not feel like studying the matter for the first time in life. Visit some websites for speedreading test and practice the skill to develop a faster , and more comprehensive way of reading. To start with, you can have a look at this book about speed reading.(CLICK HERE FOR THE BOOK) Speedreading is not only believed to save time to go through a material, but also to enhance retention.