The following sections explain how to answer these questions and should enable you to construct your own efficient and effective study plan.
If you were asked how much you studied last week, would you be able to give an accurate reply? Could you even say with any real accuracy how long you studied for yesterday? This is important because it is difficult to change a behaviour if you have very little awareness or recollection of it.
You can increase self-awareness of your behaviour by keeping a detailed diary for a couple of weeks of exactly how long you study for, what times of day you study and where you study. You may find that each week you want to try and improve on the amount you studied in the previous week.
Where you study is as important as how long you study for. Make a note of where you study because it maybe somewhere where there are distractions.
You should also keep a note of what events precede a period of studying and what events end a period of studying. These can be important determinants of your ability to persist with a period of study. You may find some events that consistently precede studying (and so maybe events that facilitate studying) and some that consistently follow studying (and may have an important influence on whether you found that study session enjoyable or not).
If you are tackling an essay question, then make sure that you have a clear idea in your head of the sequence of things you need to do before you start. This might be:
Don’t sit down to start studying saying to yourself “I’m going to sit here until I’ve finished this piece of work – whatever it takes!” The chances are that you’ll probably give up well before you’ve finished what you intended – especially if it’s a difficult and lengthy piece of work.
An ‘attainable’ goal is one that you are 100% certain you can achieve. This may be something like reading for just 15 minutes! That may sound trivial, but doing this successfully makes it much easier to continue studying later.
Everyone knows from experience that when you sit down to study it’s that first sentence that is the most difficult to write and the first page that is the most difficult to read. However, you can get started on a study session much easier if you ensure that there is something ‘easy’ for you to do when you start.
Be organized. First, make sure you have in front of you only those notes, books, articles etc. that you will need for the study session.
Develop a routine. It helps to begin each study session in the same way and to proceed through a study session routinely. This can involve being routine about simple things such as how you get your book out of your bag, where you place your pens and papers on the table, using the same study environment as often as possible, and so on.
In addition to working in an environment that is used exclusively for studying, you can take a few basic precautions to minimize physical distractions.
Studying next to a window with a stimulating view may be OK but you don’t want a view that is likely to include movement and distraction. Any movement across your field of view will automatically be distracting and take attention away from the studying task.
Keep your mobile phone silent during a study session. The vast majority of calls are not that important that you need to answer them immediately.
Learn to say “No” at least while you are studying. You can make sure you’ve dealt with any possible distracting issues before you start studying, and stick to a “closed-door” policy while you are studying.
To help you focus on your work during a study session, make sure that you’ve got all the books, articles, notes, stationery materials, etc. you need before you start.
Have a motivational poster up on the wall or even a poster giving the dates of your examinations. Don’t forget, you are trying to create a truly academic atmosphere which stimulates academic thought.
If your mind is beginning to wander, go back and read what you have already written, or re-read a section of a book that you are familiar with and understand – this will retain your attention on academic matters.
After the exam (then everything is over and irreversible)
Before the exam (there is enough time to improve marks)
"How is your study going on?" - Ask any student and you’ll get the prompt reply "it is fine". There is no reason to doubt until the exam is finished and results are in hands but then it is too late.
(a) Many students create a routine in their copies and resolve to study as per the time-table but most of them never follow it from the next day.
(b) For the first half of the year, students keep a casual approach towards their studies and at a later stage, they hastily try to achieve more in less time, sometimes reading lessons the first time on the previous night of the exam.
(c) Due to the absence of a proper study plan, students give more attention to a few subjects of their interest and set aside other books which they consider either difficult or boring.
(d) Tuition and coaching culture is doing more harm than help. It makes students dependent on others and devoid their minds from intellectual curiosity.
(e) Parents find it very difficult to keep a constant tab on their children’s studies. Nagging, coercing and pressurising to study hard generally give adverse effects.
It creates a personalised subject wise schedule as per its difficulty level by calculating the appropriate study time required to finish and revise each subject.
Study Organiser includes much acclaimed "Progress Meter" to show real-time preparation of the exam in three colours:
Green: the student is doing well
Yellow: the student is lagging and
Red : the student has to work hard as it is difficult to pass the exam.
It also indicates the percentage of marks a student can obtain in the forthcoming exam with ± 5% accuracy just like a thermometer.
Progress Meter is equally useful for parents, teachers and school administrators who wish to monitor and compare the performance of all the students with minimum interference.