Quick Tips for Quick Success

I’ve recently finished my first semester (and best semester ever, grade wise) of university in Economics. Combine that with my love for helping people in need and we’ve got some quick tips for quick success in school.

1.Prepare. EVERYTHING.

    • Plan with a calendar and task manager at the beginning of each week AND every day  
      • Include important dates, study time, work, exercise, fun, ….
      • I personally use Google calendar and Google tasks. On Sunday evenings I schedule my entire week (Work, Study sessions,  time for exercise, lunch, classes (There is a quick way to do this at the beginning of the semester using Google calendar), …). I also write weekly goals using Google tasks.
      • Every morning I write daily goals using Google tasks and rearrange my schedule for the day by adding/removing stuff in case anything unexpected comes up
  1. Know how to “study”
    • Active recall rather than passive review
      • The brain remembers better through active recall, which is the act of forcing it to work hard in order to acquire, understand or simply remember things.
      • Passive review, which is how most people study (re-reading notes/textbook, HIGHLIGHTING, ..) is extremely inefficient both for learning concepts and for your time. Please, get rid of those highlighters…PLEASE
      • Examples of active recall include:
        • Taking notes while reading your textbook
        • Asking yourself questions that you later have to answer while reading
        • Solving math problems from scratch without referencing your notes/textbook
        • Creating graphs, diagrams, … from scratch without referencing your material
        • Explaining complicated concepts by using metaphors, analogies,… as if you were teaching the subject to someone who has no/limited knowledge in that area of study
        • TESTING YOURSELF (It’s important to realize that schools don’t actually test how much you’ve learned in a class, but rather your PERFORMANCE; how well you’re able to recall SOME of the material you’ve learned, under pressure. Essentially, your approach towards exams should be similar to an athlete’s approach towards a competition: Preparing by simulating the conditions as closely as possible and executing when the moment arrives.)  
        • And many, many more. Once you get the hang of active recall, you can figure out some of your own strategies in order to learn the material more efficiently. However, an important point I’d like to make is that there is no universal strategy or technique for active recall. I strongly believe that it is entirely dependent on the class you’re taking. For example, try asking yourself basic questions about math terms without solving any practice problems to see how bad you’ll fail your exam….   
        • The big idea here is to get rid of passive review altogether and utilize active recall when studying …Trust me, your grades will thank you later!
    • Work in short intense sessions followed by regular breaks instead of cramming marathons
      • The work you accomplish= Intensity x Time
        • If you can increase the intensity of your sessions, you can greatly reduce your study time while accomplishing the same amount of work. An example of increased intensity is reducing your procrastination.

Final words and disclaimer: These quick but effective tips are meant to be applied immediately in order to reduce your study time while greatly increasing your grades. However, if you don’t apply them consistently, don’t expect any results. These tips might seem overwhelming and extremely time consuming at first sight, but trust me, they really aren’t. You’ll definitely thank yourself in the long run. Also, it is important to realize that these tips don’t come directly from me, but are based on research and amazing ideas I’ve read from other bloggers I follow (which I will link at the end of the article). Finally, this article is really vague and is meant to help struggling students ASAP. The information covered here is much, much deeper and if there is DEMAND for more specific posts, I will SUPPLY them #economics 😉

Favourite bloggers:

Thomas Frank: https://collegeinfogeek.com/

Scott Young: https://www.scotthyoung.com/blog/

Cal Newport: http://calnewport.com/blog/

Tom Miller: http://www.wtfprofessor.com/

 

 

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