Smart Study Habits
The ability to study smarter (not necessarily harder) is a much-researched topic, with science offering a number of strategies to help students supercharge their learning and better store information. Here are some of the study-proven tips that might work for you:
- Avoid all-nighters. Studies show that it can take four full days to recover from the reasoning and memory damage caused by one night of lost sleep. Plus, sleeping after learning encourages memories of the information to be wired into your brain.
- Switch up study spots. A change of scenery prompts your brain to retain information better, so even just moving from your desk to the kitchen table can help. You might also want to head to your local library or nearby park.
- Don’t skimp on workouts. Exercise amps up your study performance. This is because exercise increases the levels of a brain-derived neurotrophic factor, important for the growth of brain cells, mood and learning. And it also helps release serotonin (the mood booster), dopamine (for learning and attention) and norepinephrine (for awareness, attention and concentration).
- Take a break. Taking a short break – think 15 minutes of exercise or watching a short, funny YouTube clip – can enhance your ability to focus. What’s more, your memory is strongest for the things learned immediately before and after a break, so save the tough stuff for those times.
- Stick to a balanced diet. It’s easy to grab highly processed junk food while prepping for an exam, but what you eat can play a big role in attention and thinking speed.
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