On a particular day while I was still a student in the university of Port Harcourt, I happened to go to a department to study and then, somewhere around the corner of the class, I met this girl who was so busy with the book she was reading. Well, should you not know, I am sapiosexual. When I see serious girls, who are intellectual and give time to mental development, I get attracted a lot. After my few hours of study in the class, I got close to her and greeted. I tried to read along the lines she has been reading and then, peeped into the notes she was making. At that moment, I got disheartened. Why? What she was reading and what she was jotting down were totally different.
I tried to help, but also discovered that her comprehension level was too low for what she was studying. It was deeply rooted than what a quick fix could handle. This is how lots of students fail in school and theirs is not an issue of bad brain, but an issue of bad study habits. There are actually several of them, but in this post, I will be highlighting just 3 Terrible Study Habits Many Students Have.
Reading without direction or learning goals
A lot of students face their textbooks with the aim of just satisfying the conscience that they have read for the day. They just pick any book at any time and for the sake of being seen as a serious student, they try to spend time on the book especially for long hours. They don’t bother to consider how much they have been able to understand and retain out of what has been read so far. They don’t consider following a well-defined learning goal or ‘to-know’ list. They are just like academic Pharisees who just want to fulfil all righteousness with their daily reading, but fail to attach purpose to it.
What’s the danger?
The danger of this is that students like that always get frustrated in exam hall. They read so much, but retain so little. Getting to the exam hall, they realize they have forgotten most of the essential things they were supposed to remember or even begin to mix up information while answering questions. They are the ones who, while facing question paper, will always say things like, “but I remember reading it o! Chai! I can’t remember again.”
To avoid things like this, you need to have reading goals, a list of things you know you still need to know. No one cares how long you’re reading or whether you’re reading. The only thing that justifies your reading is your result. So, be purposeful with your reading. Let no 15 minutes of reading be a waste. Make sure that for every time you spend reading, there is something to show for it. It’s not about the length, but about how well. To learn more on this, click here.
Using only one material to learn a subject matter
This is something that a lot of students do. Students are no longer interested in broad study. They just go with the textbook their lecturer recommends without taking further steps to even know more. Even if you don’t have money for textbooks or there are no other textbooks at your disposal, what about Google and other educational websites that are probably rich in that information you need? This is the digital age where you can become an expert at almost anything just by learning it online.
Revising with open book
This is what I used to do this until I saw the light. I thought studying means reading it again and again like a memory verse. Not until my results testified to my errors, I never knew I was getting it wrong. Now I know better. You see, what makes information to stick is not recognition. It is recollection. When you open a page before you and keep gazing at it over and over, after a while, you will begin to recognize those paragraphs and texts you have seen many times.
What is the problem with this habit?
The problem is, that tricks you brain to think you have known them. If you want to confirm, close the book and try to retrieve that information and you will find out you don’t have them. You simply recognized the texts and paragraphs. You didn’t take time to recollect them. If you must recollect, you must do it without the book. This is what helps you to assess how much you still remember, how much has been lost from your short-term memory and you can now go back to the book to review what you’re missing. But when you don’t take time to assess yourself, you get to the exam hall and you’ll be disappointed at yourself. The fault is not from your brain, but from you!
Are you a student reading this post and you need real academic intervention or you’re a school administrator who sees the need to help his/her students with some of these vital study tips that we hardly get in the classroom? You can reach me here.