As an LSU student, you may struggle with whether you can go to the game on Saturday or whether you have to stay home and study for that big test coming up. Have no fear! Here are some tips for you to get the most out of your studying, so you still have time to cheer on the Tigers.
1. Plan Ahead and Start Early
Set aside a couple of hours everyday for you to get assignments and studying done. Even on days when there’s nothing to turn in, use the reserved time for reading or reviewing your notes.
Start early! Seeing the material as often as possible will help you so much when it comes to test day. You will truly understand the topic and not just have facts and definitions memorized for the exam.
- “I think the most important part of studying is focusing on getting a head start. Waiting until the last minute will only cause you stress. Even if you just start organizing and rereading notes, you’ll be better off than if you wait until the night before. When it comes to studying, failing to plan is planning to fail.” Senior, Sociology Major, Claire S.
2. Read, Read, Read and then Write!
Keep up with your reading assignments! If you always try to skim the book or search for the answer to fill out an outline, you will never soak up the information. Many students find that it is most helpful to completely read a section first for meaning and then go back and take notes on it.
- “The true key to remembering my notes is reading them and writing them by hand in my own words. It really helps me understand the concepts if I have to explain them and take the time to write them.” Senior, Political Communication Major, Hilary S.
3. Quality over Quantity
Don’t try to cram for all four of your final exams in one night! You may be able to read all of that material, but you won’t retain the amount that you need. Try to fully understand each section before moving on. This won’t just help you pass the class, but it will help you in your profession.
- “I study because I want to conceptualize the material. I don’t want to know something just because I have a test the next day. I want to know the significance it will have on my career and my life.” Senior, Public Relations Major, Erin K.
4. Go to Class
Professors will say things in class that won’t necessarily be in the notes. It’s important to remember that in college, the notes act as an aide to the lecture. Many students find it beneficial to print out the posted notes before class and jot down things the professors add in on the side. In order to get this valuable information you must be there. Besides, you never know when you’ll miss out on participation points!
- “I study the notes my professor gives out in class and read the chapters from the book.” Senior, Digital Advertising Major, David R.
5. Take Study Breaks
Straight studying for hours will drain you. If you set aside a fun activity or a reward after every 20 minutes of studying you do, you’ll soon find that you can study for longer periods of time and get the most out of the time that you do put in.
- “I like to study with a group of friends, and we usually have what we call ‘study parties.’ They are super productive, and the study breaks are the best!” Junior, Communication Studies Major, Kade S.
6. Mix It Up!
Study in the library, study on the Parade Ground, study in groups, study alone. Try out different things! It’ll get boring and monotonous if you always study in the same place.
Study groups are a fun way to mix it up! Whether you are all studying for the same exam or each have a different agenda, it will help to keep you on the right track. Friends don’t let friends watch Sports Center and study.
- “Having a study partner there to motivate and feed off of their energy helps me a lot! Otherwise I may convince myself that I can do it later.” Junior, Pre-Nursing Major, Jacob H.
Middleton Library is a great place to get your study on. There are four floors of the library and the level of noise lessens as you climb the stairs. First floor is the noisiest, and the fourth floor is complete silence. There are also study rooms that you can reserve online for either group or individual study.
7. Know What Works Best For You
It’s important to know what kind of studier you are. You will soon learn whether you get your best studying done in the morning or in the afternoon, or if it’s better for you to study with or without music playing. Do what’s best for you!
- “Last semester, I learned that I can’t study with other people and that I have to be in a completely quiet environment for me to focus and understand the material.” Freshman, Music Education Major, Jada A.
Be sure to get enough sleep before exams. Your brain works best when it’s well rested!
“An important aspect of test taking is making sure that you get enough sleep the night before. Without sleep, your brain can’t function like it would on a good nights sleep. No one wants to pull an all-nighter to only end up failing their exam. So if you plan to study in advance and make sure you get enough sleep, you’ll be on your way to an A.” Senior, Sociology Major, Claire S.