The best student in class may not necessarily be the brightest student; it could just be that he is the most diligent.

4 Ways to Be an Excellent Student

A lot of student complain and backup their complaint(s) up with the ubiquitous statement “my mind just went blank during the examination hour which could have been as a result of poor study habits. Here are ways to learn better.

Spacing works because when new information is fresh in your mind, you can retain it better when you’ve had time to forget it which allows you to strengthen the memory anew. Try spacing your materials instead of going on an all-nighter.

Yes, you have studied the content, but are they really in your head? While you do not have to know everything, one way to figure out what you know is to test yourself. A lot of student simply re-read materials and assume they’ve known it. But they forget that during the examination period, there will be just a blank paper and a pen – no textbook, and then students voice out the painful complain “my mind just went blank. This happened simply because your subconscious mind rested on the presence of the textbook during the study time and during the exam, the textbook isn’t there.

Understand it, don’t memorize it
Is the textbook full of terminologies? Try getting a handy dictionary and not just any dictionary, nursing dictionaries are always recommended for nursing and medical students, John Black Oxford Dictionary for Economics is recommended for economics and finance students and other course-related dictionaries are more likely to help. Research has shown that understood materials are more likely to be retained than materials memorized. Of course, at some point, you’d have to memorize formulae, technical words, names and figures, so save your memory bank (prefrontal cortex, hippocampus and working memory) for that. The brain has limits.

Start Early
Starting your reading sessions early is the best way to ace exams. Always study materials prior to lecture time as this will give you an original thought version of the contents and then your lecturers explanation will look like a second version to what you’ve already learned hence, making the memory stronger and the subject matter more familiar. Research shows that if new information does not connect to prior information in your brain, the information is easily lost or forgotten. So study before lectures, pay attention during lectures and then review and compare what you knew during study hours to what your lecturer explained.
With a proper time management and organization, you can study effectively and efficiently for any examination and ace it.