Category Archives: Education

How To Make The Perfect Study Guide

Filed under: College Life, Education, Tips - Angelina
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Megan Lehman BookRenter Blogger Biography

 

Making the perfect study guide is the key to being successful in college. I have tried many different tricks over the years discovering what kind of learner I am and what sort of study techniques are best for me. Now, I am getting ready to pass this knowledge on to you. Get your pen and paper ready, you’re going to want to take notes!

1. Gather The Information

Starting with the obvious, attend class! You are going to learn more by actually being in the classroom than reading out of a textbook. Sometimes there is material covered in class that doesn’t even appear in the book, so don’t skip out on any classes! I suggest recording the lecture if you can. By doing this, you can go back and listen to find information to ensure more concrete notes later. Put all of the information you have together into a handwritten study guide (writing it helps your memory).

2. Group Up

The saying “two heads are better than one” is completely true. Five is even better. Gather up a group of people in your class, but be wise to who you select. The most valuable students are the ones who sit in the front, participates in discussion, and arrive early; all traits of successful students and smart planners.  You can either share notes, or divide up the class material between each person so each person is creating a section of the study guide. Asking one person to solely focus on a specific section means they can put in more effort to detail and the facts. Set a timeline for completion and piece together what everyone’s created to create the ultimate study guide. Be sure to share the information in a timely manner so that everyone has enough time to study. Then get together after the study guide has been created to review it, share notes, and quiz each other. This was by far the best study guide creating method I’ve ever learned.

3. Details, Details, Details

Go through your lecture or discussion notes and look for specific things that can be expanded upon in your study guide, such as vocabulary word definitions, theories, life examples, and anything that was mentioned more than once during lecture. Make your study guide as concrete as possible so that nothing is missed when you’re studying! The point of the study guide is to solidify everything you have on the topic so that you only need this guide to ace your exam, making it easier to study anywhere!

Once you think you have mastered something from your study guide, explain it aloud without the assistance of your study guide. Try teaching the material to someone to see if you really do understand the topic. If you’re struggling, study more on that topic.

Now you know the ways to prepare a study guide and the details to look for in your notes. As long as your study guide is solid and you spend enough time reviewing the material, you should do just fine!

Share your study guide strategies in a comment below!

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College Exam Mistakes To Avoid

Filed under: College Life, Education, Tips - Angelina
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Cameron Tranchemontagne BookRenter Blogger Biography

As most college students should know by now, taking an exam can be a nerve wracking experience. Even if you have spent hours studying to prepare yourself, it can be easy to make simple mistakes.

There are some pretty common exam mistakes students make and that can be avoided:

1. Rushing To Finish

It’s pretty standard to be constrained to a time limit when taking a test, but you shouldn’t get too caught up on the time. If you spend a few seconds every minute or so to check the clock, all you are doing is wasting valuable time and possibly stressing yourself out. And when you are stressed about time it causes you to rush and miss things. You will read questions less carefully and could miss important instructions detailing how to answer the question. Additional instructions could ask you to explain your answer, or answer by drawing a diagram rather than explaining. It won’t matter what you write if you don’t follow the directions.

2. Not Moving On

Conversely, it’s also easy to spend too much time on a question. If you are stuck on a question that you just don’t know the answer to, it’s best to move on to answer the ones you do know so you can get those out of the way and return to the ones you don’t later.

3. Not Planning Ahead

When writing an essay, make sure you take the time to outline it before you write it. This is a situation where taking the time to prepare beforehand really pays off. Because if you really know what you are talking about it shouldn’t take anymore than 15-20 minutes for you to write a page-long essay.

4. Leaving Questions Unanswered

Even if you don’t know the answer to something, it’s always better to guess and fill in something than to leave it blank. You would lose the points for not answering anyways, so you might as well try for it. Who knows, maybe you could get partial credit? Especially if the question is multiple choice and you don’t know the answer, just circle one and maybe you’ll get lucky!

5. Cheating

I know plenty of people who have cheated and have gotten away with it, but that doesn’t mean you will be better off if you cheat. For starters, if you are cheating off of someone else’s information or answers, you better pray they have the right answers. If they don’t then you will get a reduced grade and similar incorrect answers may raise some red flags. And getting caught usually means you will receive a 0 and possibly further disciplinary actions like getting kicked out of the class or even the school! Cheating is considered immoral, but the biggest reason not to cheat is because you’re just cheating yourself in the long run. Putting in the work to succeed on your own is not only character building, but feels great when it pays off. Plus, the point of your class is to learn the material, not just pass the class.

6. Not Reviewing Your Answers

If you still have at least 5 minutes left, you should go back and check all of your answers. This is the best way to ensure that you haven’t made any mistakes and followed all the instructions.

As long as you pace yourself, read through the questions carefully, and study – you should do just fine!

What are some of the biggest exam mistakes you’ve made? Share with us in a comment below!

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Ways To Prepare For A College Midterm

Filed under: College Life, Education, Tips - Angelina
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Christine Henson BookRenter Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

It’s that time of year again… college midterm time! That means the semester is halfway over and it’s time to see what you’ve learned (or need to refresh on). Preparing for a big exam can be a little daunting, but there are a few different things you can try to prepare:

1. Re-write Your Notes

Writing things down can be the best way to remember information. Whether you type your notes in class, or write them in a notebook, try re-writing them again before test time. It is time consuming, but this trick will help engrain those notes in your memory! While you are re-writing your notes you are reviewing the class material and have the opportunity to reorganize and restructure the information to make more sense to you.

2. Make Your Own Study Guide

It’s always helpful to come up with your own way to remember things. One way to do that is to create your own study guide. Even if your professor provides you with one, you should take it and use it to make your own. Not only will this become a great reference tool for a quick study break, but it will also count as studying to make it!

3. Color Code Your Notes

Color-coding your notes is a great tool to help with memorization. You could have a different color for every topic, or you could color code based on importance. Either way, your brain is more likely to remember a fun color as opposed to just black ink. This works well if you need to remember how things are associated; just use the same color for things that are grouped together!

4. Eat A Good Meal

We have always been told to eat a good breakfast before a big test, and it’s true. A breakfast that has protein in it, like eggs and bacon, is a great way to curb hunger and help you to feel fuller longer. No one likes feeling hungry, especially during a big exam! You need to remain focused on the exam, not your rumbling stomach.

5. Get A Good Night’s Rest

We have also been told all our lives to get a good night’s sleep before a big exam. However, this can be tricky when you’re in college and you don’t have anyone telling you it’s time for bed. Don’t think you need to stay up late just to study. You can always start studying earlier in the day so you’ll be sure to get everything done before bedtime. Your exam performance will be much better with a well-rested body and mind.

These are only a few ways to prepare for an exam, try a few and see what works best for you! Share your midterm studying strategies with us in a comment below!

Good luck on midterms!

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Rejoice: Rewarding Yourself After Finals!

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Serena Piper BookRenter Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

Most college students right now are probably stressing out, studying crazy hours, drinking enormous amounts of caffeine, and losing precious time for sleep. Why? FINALS.

If you’re one of the lucky ones, finals may not be as stressful for you as it can be for other students. When I was attending school, the only classes I wasn’t worried about finals for were classes having to do with my major since the material came naturally. They were one less final to worry about, and one less thing to study. But for other classes, ones I wasn’t so naturally great at, I worried. I worried so much that when finals were finally over, I was mentally exhausted. The one thing I gave myself to look forward to for completing finals was to reward myself. And you should too when you’re done with finals!

Rewards, no matter how small, are a great source of motivation. You might be surprised at how efficient you can be if you have something to look forward to after completing a task. If you’ve worked hard, you deserve a break and to treat yourself!

Here are a few ways you can relax and reward yourself after finals:

1. Treat Yourself

Normally I’m not one to use food as a reward, but during finals week, I would reward myself with Caramel Apple Spices from Starbucks for each final I completed. Needless to say, my sweet tooth was happy! You can try frozen yogurt, ice cream with all your favorite toppings, or even just a juicy burger from a local diner.

2. Movie Marathon

Are there movies out in theaters you’re hoping to see? When finals are over, make a day of it and buy tickets to each one so you can see one right after the other! Bring along some friends to make it extra special.

3. Relax and Rejuvenate

The beach is one of my favorite places to unwind and relax. I find listening to the waves and feeling the sand between my toes really loosens me up if I’ve been feeling particularly stressed or stretched with work. Bring a journal or a book and some music, set up a blanket with a picnic, and relax for the afternoon. If the beach isn’t an option due to weather, then find another place you like to relax.

4. Retail Therapy

Who doesn’t secretly have something they’d like to splurge on? Whether it’s a pair of boots that cost a bit more than you’d normally spend, a flashy watch, or a cozy leather jacket – chances are if you walk through any store, you’ll find something that catches your eye. Or, during one of your study breaks, scan your favorite store online and pick out something you’ll really look forward to when it arrives.

5. Simple Works Too

If all else fails, your reward can simply be a cat nap and then waking up to a great book you’re dying to finish. Hey, we’re college students! Sleep holds its own value now too!

Good luck students on finals season! You will do great!

Share with us in a comment below how you reward yourself after completing finals.

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There’s An App For That: College Studying

Filed under: All Things Tech, College Life, Education, Tips - Angelina
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Megan Lehman BookRenter Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

It is not a secret that technology can be a great resource for studying for any student.  What may be a secret to you, however, is which apps are really worth your time and are helpful.  There is so much out there and it can be extremely time consuming picking out just what works for you.

Check out these tested, tried, and true apps that have worked for me and can definitely work for you too!

1. Quizlet

Quizlet has been my saving grace during the last few semesters.  This app allows you to create flashcards for any topic.  Once your flashcard set is created, you have the option of turning the flashcards into a self-grading quiz or playing games that help you study.  What I love most about this app though, is that you can type the flashcards on your computer, and then open the app and study on your phone or tablet.  I like to have the website open during lecture and discussion so that I can type in the flashcards as I go and study them on the app as I walk to my next class. Did I mention that this app is free?

2. Complete Class Organizer

Complete Class Organizer does not help you study, but what it does is just as important.  Keeping track of everything you have to do between 4 or 5 classes, extracurricular activities, and work is hard enough.  Let this app be your personal organizer.  While I have not used this app personally, 3 of my closest friends swear by it and it is definitely on my list of apps to download for this spring semester.

3. Mindjet

Putting together any research project takes a lot of time.  Trying to figure out how to organize all that information can add even more time on to that. Mindjet (iTunes/Droid) helps you take all that information and organize it in a way that makes sense.  As I wrote my honors thesis last spring semester, I cannot express how valuable I found this app to be. If you are tackling any research papers or projects, this app is for you!

4. RefMe

That research work will most likely need a bibliography or reference sheet as well.  If you need a quick reference, use RefMe (iTunes/Droid). Simply scan the barcode of the book and the app creates the reference for you!  This app is pretty fantastic, if I do say so myself.

5. Grammarly

This amazing tool is both an app and a website.  Do you have a question on whether or not a sentence is grammatically correct? Or would you like to run your essay through a quick grammar check without heading over to the writing center? Grammarly is for you. I recommend this app to all college students at every level of writing. I have been using this for years and it has never let me down once.

As finals are quickly approaching, these apps should help you stay on top of studying and help you ace those exams! Good luck and happy studying!

Share any of your favorite study apps with us in a comment below!

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