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Ineffective Study Habits

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As essential as studying as a part of students’ overall college, ineffective study habits can bring about bad results, especially if the students who carry on such practices aren’t sure why they are ineffective. This is why college students should always know why certain practices are beneficial and others are not. If they know why a particular habit is not a good one, students can improve their study routine.

Perhaps the most ineffective study habit is not studying. How can a student excel in school without studying at all? Of course, some students can absorb information right from class discussions, or they have already developed an interest in that subject to the point that they know it well, but quite often, tests include questions never discussed in class, and writing assignments explore many aspects of the subject in-depth. Studying always keeps students abreast of the subject, which includes updated information. Of course, if a student has already developed an interest in the class subject, s/he won’t need to be prodded to study; such a task has become an everyday privilege conducted, most likely, without conscious effort. Others, however, should be smart enough to know that knowledge doesn’t fall out of the sky like rain and land in a person’s head; obtaining knowledge and being able to use that knowledge effectively is an ongoing job, just like any type of employment done on a regular basis. This is why students are encouraged not to work while in school, although the reality is that some have to, with no threat or ill-effects to their study routine or the results of such efforts.

One major faux pas, which is a no-brainer, is studying in a public place where chatting and music abounds consistently. Yes, students do feel comfortable taking their laptop into the coffee shop where they can type out their papers, but such environments can spur a multitude of distractions that can prevent one from concentration.

This is especially true when one is studying for a test, which should be done in a quiet, low-key place like a dorm room or a library. The exception to laptop-in-the-public-place scenario would be if a student were, say, writing a creative piece, like a short story. Such a colorful atmosphere can serve as inspiration and stimulation. In the end, it depends on the type of studying and the purpose for being in the public area. Sometimes the quiet area is inappropriate.

Another no-no when it comes to studying is choppy study periods, especially those that are extremely brief (less than, say, a half hour, although this would likely depend on the particular student, some of which require longer or short study periods than others).

If students’ study periods are not well-organized, the information will not be absorbed or retained effectively. Muddle information is not easy to retrieve or comprehend, especially during a test. This is why, time length aside (although this factor always plays into the overall organization of study practices), wisely arranging or sequencing the notes (as in rewriting techniques) and/or reviewing necessary media for a test or project is crucial to successful learning of the subject material. Students are encouraged to consider what type of routine to employ before delving in head-first so they can moderate their study period.

By doing this, they become successful learners and, more importantly, know why they are successful. This awareness also serves them well in the work environment.


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