Study Habits & Skills

Making Good Study Methods Work:


Expect new methods to produce results.

Use whatever tactics are necessary to keep all study periods active.

Keep study periods short. Its better to several short periods than one long one.

Watch for clues in the textbook boldface and italics, all numbered items.

Pay attention to diagrams, maps, charts much important information is often given this treatment.

Ask yourself What am I supposed to learn from this assignment?

Use your common sense to judge which study methods are best for you.

Practice your new study skills! You will develop new and better study habits


Fall back on old habits, like trying to cram right before a test.

Get into a long, marathon study session.

Let details ruin your vision and perspective.

Assume good study methods are simple and not too different from your old ways.

Remember - good intentions have never made anyone successful - but good habits take a person a long way!
Study Skills
Listening: The Easy Way to Learn
Become a good listener by:
1. Coordinating your listening and thinking powers with an outside force.
2. Adjusting to the difference in the speed of your thinking and the speed of the speaker.
3. Being willing to follow.
4. Acknowledging listening as an essential and active learning process.
5. Estimating how much of the course material is taught in class.
6. Accepting responsibility for gaining as much as you can by listening in class.
7. Listening for key words and phrases (e.g. "this is important," "the three principle results are," "you will be asked this on a test.")
8. Always being ready to take clear notes. Start thinking ahead of time about the topic.
9. Using your eyes, ears, and mind actively to pursue knowledge. Keep your eyes on the teacher, your ears attuned so you can note what's important, your mind on the topic.
10. Using what you've learned from listening to prove your interest to the teacher.

Study Methods

Three basic kinds: summaries, outlines, drawing maps

Learning to take good notes will give you a clear record of what you have learned. You need good notes to reduce the quantity of words you read while studying and to make important information easy to remember.

Summary gives in condensed form the main points of a body of material.

Read and study with summary intent. Practice conditioning your mind to summarize.

Train yourself to replace the authors words with your own to make it personal so that recall is almost automatic.

Practice economy of words to separate main points from nonessential material

Avoid generalization. Learn to differentiate between opinion and fact.

Avoid fragmenting (recording ideas from an assignment in a haphazard manner).

When writing summaries, use 2/3 of the paper for content, 1/3 for highlights when reviewing.

Outlines shows the order in which ideas are arranged and the importance of separate ideas.

A correct outline should look like the following example:


I. Main Topic

A. Sub Topic I (always two or more)






B. Sub Topic II

Outlines may be arranged logically in time, numerical, alphabetical or place order. The arrangement of ideas is your personal preference however, it is important to remember that it needs to be sensible.  Use this to aid your memory.

Mapping a diagram of information; very helpful for a visual learner

May take any form you wish as long as it makes sense to you, i.e. triangles, circles.

Can be color coded.

Be sure you can read each section clearly and easily, writing so you do not need to rotate your paper. 

Please click here for more tips on study habits and learning styles.