Managing to balance daily tasks with work and studies is a difficult but necessary mission. After all, the result is maintaining quality of life and achieving good training. In other words, a great combo to face everyday life and guarantee great future possibilities.
However, maintaining an efficient study routine depends on available time, assimilation and ease with the subject, in addition to requiring a lot of effort from the student. To help, there are study methods with varied strategies. They focus on understanding, logic and practicality.
These options, which aim to make good use of time, build knowledge and consolidate subjects, are compatible with different student profiles.
Do you want to know some of these study methodologies? Continue reading and check it out!
What are the main study methods?
Interleaved study is nothing more than the distribution of materials at a time close to study. Think, for example, that in 3 days you can study human, exact and biological subjects. All this, without getting tired, ensuring full understanding.
To do so, simply set aside a proportional amount of hours for each subject. The idea, however, is not to spend too much time in just one area of study. So, divide the topics according to your free moments and alternate the subjects.
From this process, the student is “forced” to return to the previous subject each time they continue the subject, avoiding procrastination and forcing their memory to remember the topics studied. With interspersed studying, material does not accumulate and there is no despair on the eve of the test. There are many advantages in one method!
Self-explanation is a variation of summary. However, in this method, you read the text and try to explain it to yourself out loud.
To do this, it is always good to list other information and materials that may be linked to the reading. An example is studying history and remembering previous periods and the main events of the moment described — or studying biology and remembering the definition of each concept and name mentioned.
With self-explanation, the student works on memory and reasoning, building a line of thought that captures both the topic read and the connected subjects.
On the same basis, self-interrogation starts from reading and the relationship between the current topic and previous subjects — or previously studied ones. Just read the chosen article and, from there, create questions that prove your understanding.
Such questions can be created based on the subject or concepts seen in the reading. An example is reading about a type of literary avant-garde and then asking yourself who the main authors of the time and the renowned titles were, trying to remember the works that can serve as an example.
It is important that the questions and answers are said out loud for better retention. Furthermore, this technique is aimed at students who are attending high school or higher education, as they have a greater amount of information for more complete answers and well-prepared questions.
Another tip is to think of different types of questions for the same topic, with approaches that can be asked in end-of-semester exams or in tests for scholarships and entrance exams .
Do you know those funny phrases to decorate the chemical elements table? Or the puns for physics formulas? These are mnemonic methods and can be used in practically any area — but they are more common in exact and biological disciplines , or in humanities subjects that allow association. To do this, simply:
- think of acronyms in which each letter resembles a word or concept;
- assemble sentences that can be associated with an order;
- think of sentences in which each initial refers to subjects within a common theme
Furthermore, keywords that cover more complex topics also enter the mnemonic method. It is worth mentioning that this technique is best for short-term fixation — and is a good choice for end-of-semester or entrance exam reviews.
Summaries and highlights
Of course, there is no way to ignore more traditional study methods. After all, effectiveness is proven if the student is familiar with and compatible with the strategy. Among these ways, summarizing and highlighting important parts of the text are great options for increasing your repertoire and focusing on the main parts of each topic.
However, avoid excessive underlining or making a very long summary. The ideal is to highlight only the most important sections of the text and, for the summary, succinctly explain the order of events, the definition of concepts and the key elements, which can be covered later.
In addition, it is worth using colored pens, eye-catching markers and items that help with visualization, both in the summary and in the highlighted section.
A good study routine mixes theory and practice. After all, all subjects may be covered in final exams, entrance exams, competitions or even in everyday situations and in the job market , and it is essential to stay up to date so as not to be caught by surprise.
One of the most suitable study methods for understanding and retention are practical tests that prove the effectiveness of theoretical study. To do this, it is a good idea to opt for both multiple-choice and essay questions — the important thing is to look for extra questions from previous simulations and tests — or talk to the teacher and ask for exercise suggestions.
This way, you can prepare for a different level of charging. After all, the subject can be covered in different ways, and this requires the student to know how to use the information according to the type of question, avoiding copying definitions from a book and reasoning about the possible answers.
One tip is to use stopwatches to control the time taken for each question, finding an average consistent with the hours of the test. Another recommendation is to redo the exercises, even if it is difficult to understand how to get to the correct answer. With this, the student leaves the comfort zone and prepares better.
The first reading of any text tends to be dynamic. Therefore, it is common not to pay as much attention or not fully understand the concepts. When it comes to complex information, this type of reading is not nearly enough to build knowledge.
Therefore, reading more than once is a fundamental study method for fully understanding the statements. So, instead of stopping at the first reading, repeat it as many times as necessary for full understanding.
Read successively until you can remember what is written without having to consult the material. The number of repetitions varies according to each student, so it is important to persist.
Association of images with abstract concepts
This technique is considered one of the most powerful study strategies, as it allows you to memorize even content related to exact subjects more easily. This includes memorizing numbers which, due to abstraction, requires more effort to store in memory.
To overcome this difficulty, create an association between numbers and images of concrete objects. Once this is done successfully, when you think about the number, you will soon remember the associated image.
Try to be creative, because rich, strong and intensely colored mental images are stored more easily.
Mind maps are aimed at organizing information in a way that makes it simpler to assimilate. This is done with the representation of ideas and concepts, broken down from a central theme.
This method favors understanding and problem solving, in addition to benefiting memorization and learning. The first step for you to compose your mind maps is to write down or draw the idea that will be the central theme.
Around it, make balloons and derive branches to encompass thoughts related to the theme. Create as many branches as you consider necessary, then establish the important subdivisions.
Formatted information, similar to tables, are good options to help you fix content, especially when the materials involve very specific systematics.
Let’s take an example of this: imagine a Labor Law subject , for which you need to produce a table with columns to note the legal principles that underlie labor rights, another for the rights provided for by law, and so on.
The preparation can be done by drawing a table, filled out after consulting your study materials. After composing the table, copy it several times and, once this step is complete, try to reproduce the concepts without having to read it again.
This study method proves valuable — especially for those with prevalent visual memory —, in addition to facilitating fixation between parts of content.
Another great way to reinforce content is to use your listening resources, that is, listen to what you want to learn. This way of intensifying learning is based on auditory stimuli, which help the brain to fix information in long-term memory.
In this sense, the ideal is to read the contents out loud and record the readings. Then, just listen to the same subject as many times as you want, until you completely assimilate it.
The Pomodoro technique is one of the best-known forms of time management and can be applied for different purposes — including to improve studies. It consists of dividing time into timed blocks of 25 minutes of activity, interspersed with 15 minutes of rest.
The great advantage of this technique is that it allows the student to customize the times according to their needs, as long as they always alternate exercises with breaks.
The Robinson Method is a way of studying in which actions must be carried out in pre-stipulated steps. Because of this, it is also known by the acronym EPL2R:
- To explore;
- To ask;
- To read;
- Remember and Replay.
In the first phase, the student must explore the content to be studied. Next, it’s time to ask questions and raise your concerns. Afterwards, he must read the material in more depth and carefully. In the last step, it is time to ensure that the content has been fixed by reposting it.