9 Powerful Study Hacks That Will Improve Your Memory for a Test
Do you have an important exam taking place just around the corner?
Come exam time, there's no denying that high levels of stress and anxiety that come alongside a series of tests. This stress paired with the stress and ongoings of everyday life can feel incredibly overwhelming for students.
Fortunately, there are proven ways to improve your memory and reduce stress before an exam. These tactics are especially beneficial to those that feel their natural memory isn't their strong point.
If you're looking for ways to improve your memory before a test, you're going to want to read this. We're uncovering nine of the study hacks for enhancing your memory.
These tactics are sure to help you score the best results possible on your test.
1. Write it Down
When it comes to internalizing large amounts of information, it's often best to write the information down.
Being able to read the information in your own words and writing helps your brain to remember the concepts. This can be in terms of simple text, charts, pictures and diagrams.
You can also create a mind map for more complex or lengthy concepts. This breaks down a mass of information into only a few words per concept. The hope is that in remembering these few words, the brain will be able to connect the words to a larger picture.
2. Develop an Acronym
Acronyms help to make complicated notions easier for our brain to remember.
This is an especially useful tactic for remembering information in a list or in a certain order. For example, let's take the acronym "BEDMAS" that is commonly used in algebra.
In order to remember the steps associated in solving a math equation, this acronym was invented. This way, the mind is more capable of remembering one word rather than the order of six steps.
3. Study with a Group
Everyone knows how overwhelming it can be to feel confusion for a certain concept even days before the exam.
While this concept may be confusing to you, it's likely that someone in your class is an expert at that topic. On the other hand, it's likely that you are an expert on another topic in which they are confused.
That being said, it's always helpful to conduct study groups. These study groups are incredibly popular for students in college and university.
In these groups, students can help one another internalize concepts that some are struggling with. Even teaching a new concept to others can help you internalize that concept even further. After all, information is best stored in the brain when the subject matter is genuinely understood.
4. Break Information into Small Segments
When it comes to significant exams, it's best to take information into your brain in small doses.
When intaking various information at once, it can be overwhelming for our brain and our initial reaction is to feel stress.
In fact, studies reveal that the brain works best when intaking no more than four pieces of information at a time. That being said, try to break all of the necessary information into small segments. This feels less overwhelming and we are more likely to internalize the information.
5. Develop an Exercise Routine
The countless benefits of exercise is a concept that isn't exactly new information.
But, did you know that regular exercise actively helps the human brain remain sharp? It does so through increasing oxygen to the brain and minimizing the risk of developing memory issues.
Committing to thirty minutes of physical activity per day is sure to do wonders for your memory. Although this may be a long-term approach, it's certainly well worth it.
6. Speak Aloud
Have you ever noticed that you are more likely to remember a new person's name when you repeat the name aloud?
This is a common strategy used amongst people especially when meeting a large collection of new people. Psychologists refer to this idea of the production effect. This effect states that a person is significantly more likely to remember something if they say it out loud.
If you're trying to remember a concept, repeat the bulk of the concept aloud to nobody in particular. You'll be surprised at how much more likely you are to remember this concept come exam time.
7. Block Distracting Websites
These days, students have a number of distractions available at any given moment. Between the various social media outlets, a constant need for texting and everything in between, it's never been easier to get distracted.
If you're serious about your studying, make an effort to minimize your distractions. Fortunately, there are countless websites and apps that can temporarily deactivate your social media pages and texting. This can range from periods of a few minutes to periods of a few days.
8. Give Yourself a Reward
It's basic human nature to work more tirelessly toward achieving a goal when there is a reward at the end.
Let's be honest, studying can be challenging and tiresome work. At the end of a long study session, there's nothing wrong with providing oneself with a reward.
For example, if you score a score a certain percentage on a practice test, you can reward yourself with a ten-minute social media break. This gives our brain a reason to internalize information and achieve top results.
9. Get Adequate Sleep
At the end of the day, countless hours spent studying are simply not worth it without an adequate sleep.
In order to make the most of your efforts, it's essential to rest your brain and your body. Without enough sleep, your brain is not functioning properly and your ability to remember information is minimized.
Considering that only 11 percent of university students report sleeping well, it's clear that students need to make more of an effort to get a good night's rest.
The Best Study Hacks
Throughout the year, exam time rates as one of the most high-stress times of the year for students.
While keeping up with homework assignments and lessons is essential to achieving a high grade, much of the grade typically falls onto one or two exams.
That being said, it's essential to be as prepared as possible going into these exams. Fortunately, there are steps each and every student can take to better prepare for these exams.
For those looking to improve their memory and reduce anxiety before a test, these study hacks are sure to do the trick. From putting your notes on paper and reading aloud to studying with a group and blocking distracting websites, these are tactics that anyone can use.
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