4 Proven Strategies to Help You Study And Retain Knowledge

by Anne B. Robinson
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Studying and retaining the information you learned can be a daunting task for many students. There is so much to learn and memorize around exam time, not to mention the nervousness of the tests ahead, that you end up losing a lot of the knowledge that you study. The truth is that most people don’t know how to properly study.

However, don’t fret, as there are a few techniques that you can use to aid you in that regard. By organizing your approach and creating a strategy, you can get much better at retaining what you study and ace your exams. Here are some of the things you can try.

Create A Concept Map

You will have a much better chance of understanding what you have learned if you get the central concept down. If you have understood the idea of the topic you are studying, then you will have a better chance of retaining the information learned. To aid yourself in that regard, make a concept map of the topic at hand to reduce the topic at hand to its most basic essence. PosterMyWall offers hundreds of concept map templates to make your job easier in this regard. You likely won’t have a lot of time to design such a concept map from scratch so a template will make your job a lot easier and faster.

People retain information better if it is presented to them visually compared to walls of text. It also makes your topic interesting and fun to study. Take the topic at hand and reduce it down to a few bullet points. It should cover the main essence of the topic and allow anyone who reads it to understand what is being discussed. Then put that information into a concept map which you can use to study.

The example below shows a concept that a business management student may use to study. The topic in question is different branches of business management and the creator has decided to list them out along with short definitions. The graphical representation helps in understanding the concept and thus retaining the information in a better way. Depending on the topic you wish to study, a similar concept map can be made and utilized.

Teach Someone Else

Teaching what you have learned to someone else is a great way to reinforce and retain that information. If you can’t do so, you may not have studied and understood the concept well enough. By teaching it to someone else, you have a chance to retain a majority of the information since you put it into practice.

Essentially the practice is a kind of informal test. You need to have understood the material enough to teach it to someone else. In case you have, you would be able to teach others effectively. If not, you will identify weak points which need more work. You can then go back and revisit these areas later. Once done, you can test yourself again by teaching someone else.

Try Group Studying

If studying on your own is proving to be daunting, call up some friends and study together. It creates a comfortable environment putting you at ease which you won’t be in on your own. As a group, you can bounce ideas off each other, test theories, and test each other before the big day. Since the group consists of your friends or people you know, you’ll have a much better chance of retaining and recalling the information you learned.

If you get stuck somewhere, someone in the group can then help you out and teach the material to you. The group also helps each other stay on track and focused and minimizes chances of distraction.

Minimize Distractions

We have tons of distractions in our daily lives that take away our attention leaving us unable to focus on tasks. If you are distracted, then you can’t focus on studying and won’t retain the information you learned.

As such, remove all forms of distractions from around you to help you focus on the task at hand. Put away your electronic devices, sit in a quiet place, and then study. You may create concept maps using PosterMyWall’s concept map templates to get to the heart of the topic and help you retain information.

In summary

Most students dread studying because they perceive it to be boring. Because of this perception, they are unable to retain information. However, if gone about the matter creatively, it can become an interesting and fun activity. It helps if you get organized, set down clear goals for the day, and then go about achieving them.

Instead of making a colossal effort at the end, try to do little by little each day and you’ll have a much easier time studying and retaining all you have learned. Try the techniques given above and include them in your daily studying strategy and you will see the results for yourself.

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