7 Study Tips That Actually Work

7 Study Tips That Actually Work

In college, we’re given all the information we need to pass the big test. But nobody has ever actually taught us how to study. Here are seven study tips that can help you score an A on your next exam.

1. Use flashcards

It is scientifically proven that the more you write something, the more likely you are to remember it.  The best part about flashcards is that you can take them anywhere. Have some down time between work and class? Bring your flashcards. Sitting in the waiting room before your dentist appointment? Bring your flashcards. Five minutes here, five minutes there; it all adds up. Flashcards are also cheap. You can purchase 200 index cards at the dollar store.

2. Find an appropriate study place that works for you

Where you study is just as important as how you study. Some students find comfort in their own home, while others aren’t productive unless they’re at the library. Find the place you feel most comfortable and least distracted, and head there when you need to focus.

3. Find the fun in studying

Hear me out.. Studying can be extremely boring at times, especially if you’re learning a topic that you aren’t interested in.  To make studying a little less painful, buy colorful markers, buy some new notebooks, or purchase a white board to practice math problems on. It’s the little things!

4. Set (realistic) goals

When you have a ton of material to learn, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and discouraged. Accept the fact that you are not going to learn everything in one sitting. There comes a point in a study session where you will not retain any more information. Set goals for each day and formulate a reasonable study plan that you can stick to.

5. Eat healthy snacks to get your brain working

If you don’t eat healthy, you’re not going to be able to perform at your full potential. Staying hydrated is also important, as it helps you feel alert and less fatigued. Foods such as nuts, leafy greens, and green tea are proven to increase your mental focus, so load up on feel-good foods before your next study session!

6. Get enough sleep

Your brain won’t retain new information if you’re sleep deprived and “foggy.” If you have an important test to study for, hit the sack early the night before.  It will be more beneficial in the long run to get an extra two hours of sleep rather than drink an extra cup of coffee.

7. Be open to trying new methods of studying

Everyone learns differently. Some people are visual learners, while others prefer to listen to a lecture. Different classes may require you to adapt to different studying techniques. Be open to watching videos, reading a textbook, or attending that extra tutoring session. Your professor might even be able to recommend study tips that have helped their previous students be successful.

Related: Here's the Best Note-Taking Strategies for Each Type of Class


Most importantly, don’t give up! Finding a study routine that works for you takes a bit of time, but once you find what works, it can take a lot of pressure off the situation. Give these study tips a try, and good luck!