Monday, October 5, 2009

Study tips! How to get an A in every class...

Oh yeah, btw, through all the commotion with my Grandma I failed to say that I passed all my exams with A's. Yes, I received an A on every single one!

Studying hard pays off! So, if you're in an Occupational Therapy program (or any educational program at all) here are some of the things I did along with some things I will be doing in the future:

1. Preview notes before class so that you have some sort of understanding of what the instructor will talk about. Most instructors these days use Powerpoint so this should be easy to do.

2. Review notes after class or later that day to solidify what you've learned in class.

3. If you can, TAPE the lectures!!! This was a HUGE help to me. Then, listen to the lecture as if your life depends on it. Listen while you drive, while you take the bus, while you walk to wherever you going, just listen, listen, listen. Depending on how you think about this, as in your life (career), does depend on it!

4. Ask questions! You know how they say if you don't understand something chances are 1 or 2 other people in class don't get it either??? It's true!! Even if it's not true, ask anyway because you need to know the information. No one is going to think you're stupid. And if they do, then THEY'RE stupid!!! See, so now YOU think THEY'RE stupid...see how that all works out???

5. Use the Internet!! If you don't understand something and your instructor isn't explaining it well the Internet has all the answers! Really, it does. Just Google the key words and search, search, search! Use videos and pictures to help. YouTube is awesome also. My nephew picked up long division in a matter of minutes by reviewing videos on YouTube! The Internet is awesome. It works! I promise!

6. If you have the time and energy, rewrite your notes, or at least the most important parts, into your own words. This is another thing that helped me. It took me awhile to do it but it helps sooo much, especially if you're visual, as I am.

7. Be able to explain EVERYTHING in your own words. Pretend like your 80-year old Grandma asked you how something you learned about in class works, then explain that subject to her. You are, of course, talking to yourself but who'll know unless you're doing it in public? So, alk to yourself about it. If you can do this, then you truly understand the material.

8. Draw pictures!!! Pictures are worth a thousand words, right? Yes, they are! When you're in school, pictures are worth lots of A's! So, draw as many pics as you can to understand concepts and then talk (to yourself or that Grandma you just made up) about how it works.

9. Study the subject REPEATEDLY. Then start from the beginning and study it again. Then start from the beginning and study it again. Then start from the beginning and study it again...These are not typos...see a pattern here??? Repetition is the key to learning. Don't expect to review something once or twice and know it. How do you learn a song? Or someone's name? How did you learn to tie your shoe? You repeat it OVER AND OVER AND OVER. Studying is no different. I studied all my Occupational Therapy subjects so many times I started seeing their concepts in my everyday activities. When I looked at a door hinge I saw a second class lever. When I sat in a chair, I saw an eccentric, closed chain movement. When I lifted weights I imagined the actin and myosin in my muscles getting bigger. This tip works...maybe a little too well!

10. DON'T EAT!!! Eating wastes precious study time. Just kidding! I couldn't think of a real #10 so I put this one instead. Ten tips sounds better than 9 tips, right? Even though I really didn't eat during my study time, don't be like me! Dare to be a leader, not a follower!


Happy studying!

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