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What are some good study habits that will help me in a rigourous major

Hey, I am a nursing student and I never developed any good study habits because ei would do well or at least pass by studying 2 days before the exam but that has not been enough with nursing and I am scared of failing

#studyhabits #college #university #nursingstudent #nursing #healthcaremajor #nurse-practitioner #nurse #healthcare

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Rose’s Answer

Hi Hargun,

So many people, when they get into college, found out that college classes are WAY harder than high school ones. You are definitely not alone here. It is awesome you realized that your old study habits do not fit anymore in college. In summary, the key of succeeding in college is to study throughout the semester, instead of two days before the exam. The reason being there are WAY too many concepts to learn for a class that it really would take a whole semester to absorb and it is impossible to do in 2 days.

Here are some detailed study habits I think are necessary in succeeding in college:

1. Take notes during class
- So many people skip lectures and study on their own. While it might work for some, I think it is not effective. Take good notes during classes, and form questions when you learn the new concepts. If possible, preview the lecture material before classes. Taking notes during lectures helps you absorb the knowledge and helps you review before the exam.

2. Do homework and correct your mistakes
- do the assignments every week and correct your mistakes within one week. Organize all homework well so you can easily review them before exams.

3. Form study groups with peers
- You'll realize you are not alone in this journey! Discussing concepts with others helps you learn too. Do homework with them, review before exams with them.

4. Office hour & Outside resources
- When you don't understand something, go to your professor's office hour, or google/Youtube for relevant information. I can guarantee you to find some info online.

5. Test yourself
- List out knowledge points and test yourself. You might find some Quizlet helpful. Or make your own cards.

6. Look for college resource center
- Your college may provide tutoring, and study workshops and are typically free! Don't waste those resources.

Hope these can inspire you to form some new study habits for you :) College classes take a lot of time - in my college, one class typically require ~10h of study per WEEK. Prioritize your time - if you would like some suggestion on time management feel free to ask in another question.

Best,

Rose
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Kelly’s Answer

The previous answers are fantastic, so I have nothing more to add on study tips, but I will share a philosophical perspective that I wish I had picked up on earlier in life.

On the first day of my final semester of a biology/chemistry double major, a professor shared the math of how much it cost us as students per minute of classroom instruction. It was simple math but a profound way of looking at things. It taught me the value of instruction he and my other professors were providing and ensured that I was there for every minute of that instruction and taking advantage any bonus time that professors or TAs were willing to give - that maximized my return on investment (ROI) and that investment was in myself ultimately. On the flip side, it also empowered me to hold my professors accountable for giving me every minute of instruction we students were paying for. No longer was I appreciative of being let out early or a professor starting late...these practices were eating into my ROI. Make sure you're maximizing the ROI into yourself and your future.
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Matthew’s Answer

The biggest advice I can offer is staying organized. Find a note taking system that works for you and stick with it. I use OneNote or Evernote to keep my work organized. All your notes will be shared to all of your devices which makes studying on the go easy. Hope this helps.

-Matt NP-C
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David’s Answer

Great question! I completed Pre-Med coursework during undergrad and it required good study habits. There's always going to be a small percentage of people that have photographic memories and don't have to study much. Even they have to at least review the content and materials to be successful. The rest of us normal humans have to study hard to be successful. The other posts on this thread are great. Here are some of the key things that worked well for me:

- Build it in to your weekly schedule: You might be able to get away with cramming for a couple days to get through some courses. For the harder more rigorous classes, there's no substitute for regular studying. Chipping away at it over time is so much easier and less stressful. For example, what time of day are you most productive? For me, I like to do my most challenging work first thing in the morning. I scheduled regular blocks of time each day or several days a week to dedicate to heads down studying. Don't forget to keep time set aside for fun stuff too! I always enjoyed the play more when I knew I had checked the box for studying.

- Find what studying style works for you and stick with it: Some people like to study with a group. Some like to study at home on their bed. Others like to study solo in a loud environment like the main library or a coffee shop so they can take regular breaks to socialize. I've always preferred quiet environment with as few humans as possible where nobody would bother me. I rarely studied with groups because it was more distracting than productive for me. Graduate school libraries tend to be quieter even if there are more people present; the older buildings with dated furniture etc tend to get less foot traffic. I would plan ahead for meals and snacks, and pack up everything I would need for a 2 or 4 or even 8 hours dedicated to studying. I would take breaks every so often, but this allowed me to really focus on the work.

- Budget your time: Look ahead at your coursework across all classes and do some planning around how much time you'll need to dedicate to reading, lab work, and homework to get through everything successfully. This can be a weekly, monthly or even quarter/semester estimate. Total that for all of your coursework and then use that to back in to how much time you'll need to dedicate to each course each week, and account for additional study time needed leading up to an exam for a specific class. Once you have the totals, you can start to think about a normal 7 day week and decide how much time you'll need to dedicate to each course, and WHEN you'll work on each course each week. eg: "I'll spend 90 minutes on Course X Mon/Wed/Fri every week." You can always adjust your planning mid-semester/quarter.

- Take care of yourself: Don't forget to budget time for your other obligations... and yourself! You might have a job, an internship, or other commitments that chew into your time each week. Regular exercise, even if it's a 5-30min walk a couple times a week is important. Eat well -- it makes a huge difference in your stamina and mental clarity. Regular fun is important too! Once you've done the planning for the studying and other commitments, you'll be able to enjoy the fun stuff even more because you'll know that the important stuff is taken care of.

- Silence the world: Put your phone on silent. Delete your social media apps. Do whatever you need to do to turn off the world so you can focus on what you're trying to accomplish. There are settings to still allow calls from certain people if you want to be available for an emergency. Everything else can wait until your next break.

David recommends the following next steps:

Try different study styles and reflect on which one is most productive for you personally.
Look at all your courses and estimate how much time you'll need over weeks/months/quarters/semesters to be successful. Break that down by week and then create a schedule.
Plan your "study kit" -- what supplies, food and drinks will you need to get through your planned sessions?
Decide how you're going to limit distractions during study sessions.
Decide how you're going to take care of yourself. When are you going to set aside time for fun stuff? When are you going to exercise?
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Dan’s Answer

There are many good suggestions already here but I will add some more...

1) Continue to study (reading, practice problems, ect.) until you realize that you understand it all and you are no longer struggling to answer the question. If you are not able to easily answer every question, you are not yet ready for an "A". Anything else increases the risk for a grade less than an "A".

2) Don't stop trying to master difficult subjects. If you put enough time and effort into learning a subject, you will eventually learn it. Some things take longer to master than others.

3) A general guideline is that you must repeat something 10000 times before you are an expert. This will not happen overnight and you will graduate and be in the workforce before you reach this level.

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Rebecca’s Answer

Hi, this is a very good question. Good habit can help you to improve the study efficiency. I have a few suggestions below :
1. Prepare before attending the lessons and think about any questions you may have
2, Concentrate when attending lessons and raise your question
3. Do revision after the lessons everyday
4. Allocate time for your assignment in advanced
5. Form study groups with your classmates
Hope this helps! Good Luck!
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Jeff’s Answer

Excellent question!
Rose's answer is very on point. I would stress that staying on top of reading and homework assignments is key. Doing the reading assignments ahead of class will make the lectures more meaningful, and this will also help you to ask questions about topics you may not understand.
I was a chemistry major, and I used to make note cards for things that needed to be memorized, so I could study them before an exam. I imagine nursing school topics also require lots of memorization, so note cards could be very helpful

Good Luck! We need lots of well trained nurses
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