No two college students learn in exactly the same way. Take a look around the room during your next lecture session - every person sitting around you has their own unique strengths and weaknesses as students. Some excel at writing and research-related tasks, while others get ahead by putting their top-notch studying and note-taking skills to good use.
But no matter which type of learning skill youre best at, you wont be able to pass your college classes without doing well on tests. And when you get right down to it, its your ability to remember names, dates, and other important details that will determine whether youll be able to perform on tests in college. Memory is a bigger part of college success than most students realize.
If youre the type of person who is constantly losing your car keys and forgetting where you put your backpack, dont despair. The good news is that memory can be improved. Just as if it were a muscle, you can exercise and strengthen your capacity to remember all those pesky little details that can really come in handy during college exams. Use these tips to start boosting your memory power today.
Use memory tricks that play on your unique learning style. There are a million different memorization techniques out there, but not all of them are equally effective for each student. Make use of the tips and tricks that resonate with you if youre a visual learner, use charts and graphs to memorize material. If youre an auditory learner, use mnemonic devices or make associations with pegwords. If you try to force yourself to use a memorization technique that doesnt fit your learning style, youre probably going to just end up wasting your time.
Rely on repetition to make the information stick. When it comes to memorization, nothing works better than good old-fashioned repetition. Experts say that repeating information five to seven times is usually good enough to form a foundation for long-term learning. If the material is difficult or you have a lot to cover, increase the number of repetitions until you get it down pat.
Learn information in bite-size chunks. Memory experts warn that you shouldnt try to memorize vast amounts of data all at once. Instead, break the information you need to know down into smaller units that make sense to you. Most experts recommend working with chunks of no more than seven to eight pieces of information for maximum effectiveness it turns out the human brain isnt equipped to handle much more than that at one time.
Review your materials every day. No matter how much time you invest in memorizing information, its likely to slip away if you dont refresh your memory on a regular basis. Once youve done the heavy lifting of memorizing information for a test, make sure you revisit the material once a day or so to make sure it stays fresh in your mind.
Gradually increase the amount of information you memorize at one time. If youre the forgetful type, it may take time for your memory capacity to expand — but memory experts say it will happen if you work at it consistently. Over time, begin challenging yourself to remember more information at one time. Before you know it, youll be acing all of your tests and keeping track of your car keys, to boot!
Is your memory like a steel trap, or more like Swiss cheese? Have any horror stories about your forgetfulness? Tell all in the comments.
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