How to Actually Study


Sitting down with the intent to study generally isn’t enough to help you actually study. Needing to learn how is something some are embarrassed to admit, but knowing what works for you is valuable and may save you hours–and your grades. Learning is never a ‘one size fits all,’ and understanding your preferences can help you memorize and study outside of school without the guidance of teachers and peers.

Studying is worthwhile to help you memorize different subjects and refresh your brain, especially before a test. If you can absorb everything taught in class, that’s great! But everyone can learn something new. Even if you don’t think you need it, finishing a good study session always gives you a positive feeling and progress faster in school with a strong foundation on the subject. Reviewing work after school can help improve your confidence and reduce stress considering exams. If you feel like you can do more and haven’t done enough for your class, that’s okay! One of the worst feelings is getting a bad score and knowing you could’ve prevented it. Some of the following tips can help you get things done and possible others with their classes.

A tremendous reason students skip out on studying includes self-discipline. Self-discipline is a powerful skill that even the most intellectual can struggle with. Not many look forward to studying, so finally forcing yourself to sit down is an accomplishment, but after, you may not even get anything done. Starting is the hardest part because there is a lot of dread about how bad you think it’ll be, but I guarantee it gets a lot easier and is never deathly boring.

Learning to strengthen your self-discipline starts with no distractions! Turn your notifications off, sit in a new environment other than your room, set your goals, and even a time. Knowing your studying window can encourage work. You can even make it a challenge to see how much you can get done. If you need, you can ask someone else to make sure you’re on task with an occasional check-in, but don’t depend on them for your homework and productivity. You need to want to get better about studying–even if it’s only to get your work done–so there is motivation.

According to, studying with a group is beneficial for many reasons. As briefly described, having someone else to tell you and make sure you are on track helps you study and even encourages you. You can even have fun with your chosen group and relax as friends after a good session is completed. Having 1-5 people to bounce ideas off of and compare notes gives you more information and helps others. Teaching people has also proven to help them retain information faster while helping them! You get to feel knowledgeable while they enjoy your teaching. Make sure your study group actually wants to study. One of the most frustrating things is wanting to learn but everyone around you is goofing off.

Having organization is a key aspect of studying. There are many aesthetic looks for studying, but you should never expect it. Organization means you can easily understand and find your data. Sticky Notes, highlighters, and categorization through a table of contents or tags help you find everything. Writing everything you learn will also help you retain information, almost as a review.

Studying is hard and while some may brag about never needing it, it’s never something to be ashamed of. Learning itself is a spectrum and you should never feel trapped into how you ‘should’ or ‘shouldn’t’ study when it makes sense for you! Make sure you don’t overwork yourself, take breaks, and pat yourself on the back when you complete your work. It’s an accomplishment in itself, but remember to not get stuck into the box of what you can and can’t do. Happy studying Dimond!