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Study Smarter, Not Harder
Transcript of Study Smarter, Not Harder
Prioritise tasks in terms of their importance and urgency
Deal with large "must do" tasks first and fit some of the smaller tasks in the gaps.
1. Set Goals and Priorities
2. Get Organised
4 Key Strategies
Remember these 20 words
1. Try and give yourself one day off a week. Use it as a reward for sticking to your timetable and plan ahead to make sure that you attend to some other aspect of your life apart from study.
2. The smart answer to this is 'flexible enough to cope with unexpected events and not so flexible that you never stick to your plan'. The real trick here is to constantly review and modify your plans and to reprioritise activities as the need arises.
3. There are a lot of things to consider but the first piece of advice is that you can achieve something in even the smallest possible time. For example, a 5 minute review of lecture notes while waiting for the bus may save you hours of study later in the term. For those major sessions needing concentration and creativity you may want to find out if you work best in the morning or the evening.
Learning, Teaching and Student Engagement
James Cook University
Need more help? Email:
I feel confident to apply time management, organisation and memory techniques to study more efficiently
Ask for a show of thumbs. Check for questions
JCU's Learning Skills Online Website:
-> Learning - Study Smarter, Not Harder
-> Organisation - Getting it together
Planning and Time Management handouts in the Learning Centre
4. Learn How to Learn
3. Understand your Brain
1. Set goals and prioritise
2. Get organised
3. Understand your brain
4. Learn how to learn
Divide and Conquer
Our brain is constantly changing and we have the capacity to improve how we learn, think and remember things at ALL stages of our lives!
concerned, friendly, support, approachable, encouraged, friendship, participation, interaction, empowered, anxiety, understanding, comfortable, expectations, awareness, enthusiasm, motivation, workload, experience, learning, valuable
1. Should I study every day?
2. How flexible should I be?
3. When should I study?
Share one of your study strategies
Possible Answers: Forming a study group, effective time management through planning, categorising or chunking new information, breaking large tasks down into small tasks, having regular breaks, actively participating during contact hours, testing myself, regular reviewing etc.
What is your end goal?
Why are you studying?
Now it's time to set secondary goals to achieve your primary goal, for example:
develop a deep understanding of your chosen area
pass your assignments and exams
gain practical experience in your field
maintain a healthy work-life balance
How will you prioritise all those tasks?
Students uncertain about their primary goal should be referred to Careers and Employment.
The empty bottle is a metaphor for students' time. If they choose to fill it up with small/ less important tasks first, there may not be enough room left for major tasks. If they bottle the larger pieces first, the small sand grains (minor tasks) will fit around them.
Study Period/ Assessment Planner
assignment due dates
weeks you will work on each assignment
Include allocated times for all specific tasks (academic and non-academic)
List of tasks to be carried out each day with an allocated time.
Tick completed tasks and give yourself a pad on the back!
You can pick up planning templates from the Learning Centre!
You can promote the growth of functional neurons in your brain and therefore increase your intelligence by:
challenging your mental capacity
doing unfamiliar tasks
understanding new concepts
So, the harder the assignment, the better for your brain!
Under what conditions do you study best?
The best state of mind for studying is called relaxed alertness
During relaxed alertness, different sections of the brain communicate most efficiently. Stress reduces your ability to learn new things.
How many words can you remember?
Try and write down as many as you can.
Another 20 words
....categorise them with your neighbour
rose, crayon, hibiscus, car,
light bulb, desk, star, pen, daffodil,
truck, train, table, matches, lily,
chalk, aeroplain, bed, chair,
How many words can you write down this time?
What did you do differently the second time around?
You had some
of the task
You were an
You worked with a
You tested yourself (
You took more
existing time better
Look for connections and categories in new information that can help trigger your memory.
Engage with readings or lecture slides before the lecture to have a framework upon which to place new information.
Make use of many senses while studying.
Revise regularly by testing yourself to move information to your long-term memory.
Study groups help you become an active learner.
Be organised and manage your time effectively.
Go around the room: