Strategies to Improve Study Skills

Questions and Answers

Remembering Strategy

Select:

  • Ask the instructor what is important to remember.
  • If you don't understand the question, don't be afraid to ask.
  • Examine your class notes - underline any important information.
  • Read textbook assignments - take notes on important information
  • Study handouts - mark important information.

Remember:

Choose techniques that will help you remember.

Visualize - form a picture in your mind that will include all the important parts. The more fanciful the picture, the better.  You can also try putting it in a story that's funny or somehow memorable to you.

Associate - remember by how things go together (smaller groupings are easier to remember)

Apply - remember by using information in some way

Repeat - read item, then say item, then write item. Repeat process several times.

Use mnemonic devices:

  • Rhyme - form a mental picture of the rhyme
  • Acronym/Abbreviation - form a word from the first letters of items (eg., HOMES for the five Great Lakes, FBI, NOW, AIDS)
  • Acronymic phrase - phrase formed by words beginning with first letter of items (eg., Very Active Cat - for blood vessels: veins, arteries, capillaries.

Review:

Reread - periodically (weekly reread materials to be remembered)

Recite - immediately recite information out loud

Rewrite - then write information in concise form (using key words and phrases)

Test Taking Tips

  • Determine what material the test will cover.
  • Ask your instructor what types of questions the test will include.
  • Manage your preparation time and begin 5 days in advance.
  • Organize all of your information - use flashcards, summary sheets, outlines, etc.
  • Study the big idea, identify supporting details, look for relationships and applications of the information.
  • Review your text, notes, handouts, etc. at least 3 times before the test.
  • Develop your own test questions and answer them.
  • Review old tests or quizzes.
  • Recite information out loud to test yourself on what you do not know and then review that material again.
  • Write down any information on the back of the test that you are afraid that you might forget.
  • Preview the entire test before you start and determine how much time you will need for each section.
  • Circle or underline directional words and make sure you answer all parts of the question.