Making the commitment to study on a regular basis and following through are extremely important, but where you choose to study can also play a role in your academic success. Because different individuals study best in different surroundings, there isn’t a single study environment that is best for everyone. The following, however, are general pointers that will likely apply to all students.
- Have a space that is devoted to studying: No matter where you choose to review your notes and practice math problems, studying should be all you do in your study space. It’s not advisable, for instance, to review your notes while lying on your bed since that is the area you associate with sleeping. When you have a dedicated study area, you will automatically begin to associate that space with work and concentration over time. Eventually, it will be easy to get into “study mode” almost as soon as you enter your special area.
- Remove potential distractions: You know what distracts you when you’re trying to study, and you should make an effort to remove anything that may potentially distract you to make all of your study sessions as productive as possible. Potential distractions could include the Internet, cell phones, the television, or even an open door or window. For some people, complete silence can make it hard to concentrate. In this case, it’s permissible to play some soft music in the background. If you live in a dorm and can’t tolerate any noise at all, it might be a wise idea to head to the library when it’s time to review your notes. As you probably already know, college dorms are notoriously noisy places.
- Create a productive space: The quality of your study time is far more important than quantity so do your best to make sure that your space is as productive as possible. First, try to find a room with good lighting that is not too hot or too cold because this will help you concentrate. Secondly, try to look for a chair that offers good back support and isn’t too comfortable because a chair that is too comfortable may encourage you to go to sleep. Finally, try to make sure that you have all of the materials that you may need during your study session in the room, including your notes, books, calculators, pens, scrap paper, etc.