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Develop Good Study Habits & Get Better Grades

written by: Sushma • edited by: Trent Lorcher • updated: 3/2/2012

Do you feel as if you work really hard but are still unable to get good grades? Do study habits play any role in getting good grades? Sure, they do. Here are some tips to make your time studying more efficient.

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    If you want to do better in school and in life develop good study habits! What does that mean? It doesn't mean you have to spend all your free time studying. Instead, you just have to study smarter.

    There are many reasons students develop poor study habits. This could include:

    • Poor lifestyle
    • Studying in an inappropriate environment
    • Procrastination
    • Lack of concentration
    • Non-directional approach without setting goals
    • Zero motivation
    • Poor memory

    How many items on that list apply to you? Don't worry if it's a lot. Even the best student has struggled with these issues at one time or another. Find some ways to overcome and improve.

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    How to Improve Study Habits

    Learn How to Organize

    The key point to learning good study habits is organization. It can be done with the help of a daily planner. Include times for each and every activity--playing, sleeping and studying. Cultivate the habit of keeping organized i.e. arranging books related to a particular subject in one place.

    Develop Time Management Skills

    Set aside a specific amount of time each day to study. Make sure it is at a time where your homework will have your full attention. If you have a tv show or another event you know will distract, make sure to plan to study before or after that event. Study with concentration and energy. Never postpone reading. Remain up to date with all assignments. This helps avoid unwanted test anxiety.

    Choose a Good Study Location

    Choose a location that is free of disturbances--television, family chats or screaming kids playing in the backyard. Some do well if some pleasant background music is played. Choose a location that enables you to concentrate on your studies. In addition to selecting a perfect location, get all the essentials at once. Getting up every ten minutes to grab a book or other things will divert your attention. If you are unable to concentrate, do not force yourself. Take a break and participate in an activity you love. Start reading when you feel refreshed.

    Prepare Notes

    At the end of every study session, take about ten to fifteen minutes and note down what you have learned in simple points. This serves as a means of self assessment. The notes will serve as a quick reference guide at the time of examination.

    Set goals

    Set realistic and attainable goals. For example, your goal should be attaining a particular grade say A or B and should not be too far from your current grades i.e. if you are attaining a C grade, set a goal of attaining a B grade first and then jump to an A. This helps to organize, plan and direct your efforts so as to attain the goal. Setting attainable goals boosts confidence levels and energizes you to set higher goals in future.

    Use All the Senses

    The best way to remember what we read is to create a realistic picture of it in the brain. The chances of remembering a thing you have seen are greater than the chances of remembering what you have read. If possible, try to give a practical spin to what you have read. You will never, ever forget what you have done. However, gauge the pros and cons before implementing any act.

    Reward Yourself

    Staying motivated is the crucial element for success. Whenever you attain a goal, treat yourself with a small reward like watching a movie or spending a weekend with friends.

    Improve Memory

    So you tried everything and you're still not achieving your goals? You need to improve your memory power. It is very easy to develop a good memory by taking a note of everything you read and trying to recollect it as often as possible. Write things down that you struggle to remember and quiz yourself on them with flash cards. You can also try using mneumonic devices to help remember information.