How to Study: Top Research and Tricks

Sydney Thompson

Senior Staff Writer

The last weeks of April are the beginning of finals season for the spring 2022 semester at UNCG. Papers, exams, and other forms of finals are taking place, and to prepare, students will begin studying for these finals. One thing that is often emphasized in classes is that students don’t know how to study, and it seems that everyone has their own ideas on how to improve the process. However, what does the most recent research suggest? 

Studying is a common struggle, especially for students at the university level. According to the Washington Post, most students do not know how to study. This is a skill that should be learned in elementary school but often is not officially taught by teachers. Instead, according to the Washington Post, the responsibility falls on parents who may not know how to study. 

One of the critical elements of studying is the environment in which students study. Almost all guides to studying emphasize this part over other study habits. Experiment and learn what schedule and environment work best for you. Some people work better in longer sessions, while others prefer spreading out studying; some like to study in the library, while others choose their dorm room or apartment.

If you were to review materials focused on how to study, it is difficult to find out what to actually do when you are “studying.” According to the Learning Center at UNC, one of the major misconceptions about studying is that reading or re-reading texts and notes is sufficient for studying. It is a necessary part, but that isn’t all that students should be doing to review for finals.

The most important part of studying is some element of interacting with the material; this can be flashcards, answering practice questions, or teaching the material to someone else. It can even include creating projects like concept maps. What is most important, according to experts, is that the student is doing something more memorable with the material. 

In particular, solving practice problems is shown to be one of the most effective studying methods according to, a resource dedicated to teaching students how to study. Exposure to problems and practice with material that will appear on finals is most important for being ready. 

While studying as soon as possible is essential, it is also crucial to find a study approach that benefits your material learning. The only time that is too late to begin studying is after the final exams are finished. 

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