10 Surefire Study Tips to Ace Your Next Test

We have all been there. The day before a big test and you know you need to cram 8 weeks of work into 3 hours of studying. Even though sleeping with your math book under your pillow may not help you retain all the information in your course, we have a few tips that are sure to help you remember all the important information.


  1. Sleep it off. Studying right before bed can help you retain more information. During your sleep, the brain strengthens memories, allowing you to recall items that were learned during the day.
  2. Eliminate Screen Time. Social media, blogs and emails can all distract us from our studies and work in the worst way. Logging into Facebook or reading something off topic ends your train of thought on the information presented and can draw you away from your studies for too long. Get away from the computer if it is distracting you. If you have to do some studying on the computer use an app (like SelfControl) that can block you from distracting content.
  3. Shout it out. Reciting information out loud makes you more likely to remember it. While reviewing your notes, start saying them aloud. But if you are studying at 2 a.m. and your entire family is asleep, be courteous and try to whisper!
  4. Reward Yourself. Break your studying up into smaller increments, whether that be chapters read, hours worked or pre-tests aced. Then reward yourself for the hard work. Go play with your dog, eat a snack or do a little dance! Whatever will help you pep up in between study sections by rewarding yourself will allow you to get excited and start the next section strong.
  5. Meditate on it. Before you begin studying, try three minutes of mediation. Researchers claim that those few minutes can help reduce anxiety, boost attention span and clear your mind of clutter. It may also be a good pre-test ritual as well!
  6. Eat the right stuff. Omega-3 fatty acids are known to help fuel your brain activity more than other foods. You can find them in some fish, olive oil and nuts. Load up on an Omega-3 laden meal before your study session to help get your brain to work.
  7. Get your blood pumping! Studies show that exercise can increase your brain-processing speed as well as other cognitive functions. So get up and get moving! Maybe putting your textbook on the treadmill and studying is the magic ingredient for acing your next test.
  8. Chew on it. Use the same flavor of chewing gum during studying and test taking. Researchers have concluded that chewing gum can help improve test performance when chewed.
  9. Get Organized. Before you study, clean your work area. When organizing your workspace, you clear the clutter from your peripheral vision which allows you to focus more on the tasks at hand. A box of crackers on your left and your cell phone on your right can easily distract you.
  10. Write—Don’t Type. You may be quicker when typing out your notes, but several studies suggest that writing out things increases your ability to recall them later on. Handwriting also allows you to access different parts of your brain than the parts you use to type.

Author: Claire Stewart

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