Earning how to retain whatever you study is one mutual problem many students have, not only those in the university but also those doing their master’s degree, meaning they were not able to conquer it while studying for their first degree.
Retaining what you have studied is a craft everyone who wants to go a long way academically should learn. Some people have mastered retaining what they have looked at to the extent that it becomes a hobby to them, and they do it effortlessly, while others still find it difficult even to remember the minimum.
This shouldn’t be a problem because there are practical ways to retain better what you have studied, and these methods vary from person to person, but the procedures remain the same.
While in college, I was one of those students who found it difficult to remember what they had studied, especially when they entered the exam hall. This has been a problem I have had since my high school days.
I tried every possible means to overcome the challenges, but I couldn’t because I never knew where to start. My first year in school was a big challenge. Since I didn’t figure out how to retain what I had studied, I started looking for solutions and started studying even harder. But learning didn’t solve the problem, so I had to look for practical solutions.
I found some that did work to an extent, but that was not what I was looking for until I started making friends with those we considered best in the class. I made as many friends as possible, so we did start studying and going to classes together. I started learning how they write their notes, how they write down what the teacher is teaching, and how they mark each other to remember them better while studying.
We did start going to night studies together. Though it was tough for me, I had to keep pushing so that it could become part of me. Yes, I did learn this method and started becoming a better version of myself, which was all I wanted.
Retaining what you have studied for your exam is very important. I will confidently say that it is one of the best investments any student should look into because if you do not, you will face several challenges, such as having a low grade in your exams, not being able to stay focused in class while lectures are going on, and having difficulties focusing inside the exam hall.
In this guide, we will learn the most practical method for doing this, and we will also learn the best way you can start making good use of your time to use the best time of the day to remember what you have studied even while sitting in the exam hall. This method works for everyone as long as you implement all the strategies given to you.
How to retain information when studying for an exam
Preparing for an exam can be an arduous task, particularly when you’re faced with a substantial amount of information to absorb. Nonetheless, there are specific techniques you can adopt to improve your retention of material and ultimately excel on the test. Some of these methods include the following:
Review the material frequently.
Frequently revisiting the content is among the most effective ways to remember what you’ve studied. It’s best to do so in brief intervals spread out over time; this is known as spaced repetition, which aids in consolidating information in your long-term memory. Numerous resources are available to assist you in reviewing essential concepts and facts from your notes or textbooks, such as flashcards, quizzes, or online applications.
Enhance your knowledge retention by practicing retrieval. Testing yourself on the information you have learned can be a highly effective strategy for reinforcing memory and identifying areas of weakness. To implement retrieval practice, you may answer practice questions, create summaries, share the material with others, or employ mnemonic techniques to facilitate recall.
Use active learning techniques.
To enhance your learning, it is recommended to employ active learning methods that involve meaningful engagement with the material. This means going beyond the passive act of reading or listening and utilizing techniques such as note-taking, summarization, questioning, and practical application to real-life scenarios. Active learning not only improves your understanding of the material but also facilitates better retention of information over time.
Manage your study environment and schedule.
The quality of your study environment and schedule can significantly impact your ability to retain information effectively. A distraction-free, comfortable space is ideal for studying, where you can devote your undivided attention to the task. Careful planning of your study schedule is also crucial, as cramming before exams is never a wise option. Instead, spreading your study sessions throughout the day or week and incorporating ample time for rest can help alleviate stress and prevent fatigue, which is known to impact memory and concentration negatively.
Use visual aids
Incorporate visual aids into your study routine. When you utilize tools like diagrams, charts, graphs, maps, or pictures, you can enhance your ability to comprehend and retain information. Moreover, incorporating visual aids can increase engagement with the material, making studying more enjoyable. You may access pre-existing visual aids in textbooks or notes or create your own with various online tools or apps. Additionally, you can utilize colors, symbols, or labels to emphasize critical connections or concepts within your visual aids.
Teach someone else
One effective way to gauge your grasp of a subject and improve your comprehension is to instruct others. Teaching someone else requires you to convey ideas with precision and coherence, enabling you to strengthen your knowledge. Additionally, anticipating and addressing potential uncertainties or queries from the individual you teach can help pinpoint areas you may be lacking. Whether it’s a relative, a colleague, or even an imagined group, instructing others is an advantageous method to reinforce your understanding of a topic.
Use memory techniques
Utilize memory techniques to enhance your ability to encode and retrieve information quickly and effectively. There are several memory techniques available, such as mnemonics, association, imagery, and chunking.
Mnemonics refer to words, phrases, sentences, or acronyms that help remember a list of items or facts. An example of a mnemonic is “ROY G BIV,” which refers to the colors of the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet).
Association involves linking new information to something you already know or can easily remember. For instance, associating a person’s name with their appearance, occupation, or personality. Imagery involves creating vivid and memorable mental pictures of the information to be remembered.
For example, you can imagine a scene or story that involves the information. Chunking is another technique that entails breaking down large or complex news into smaller and simpler units or groups. You can chunk a long number into smaller segments, such as 0800 123 4567 instead of 0800 123 4567.
Putting all these tips to work will help you better read, understand, and go far as a student. You will gain the upper hand over your equals, and you will be in a better position to pass your exams at all times.