Study Skills, Fys, Spring 2008
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Study Skills, Fys, Spring 2008

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Advice for studying in college. Includes information for reading, listening to lectures, taking notes, preparing for and taking tests.

Advice for studying in college. Includes information for reading, listening to lectures, taking notes, preparing for and taking tests.

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Study Skills, Fys, Spring 2008 Study Skills, Fys, Spring 2008 Presentation Transcript

  • GRAHAM GARNER FIRST-YEAR SEMINAR SPRING 2008, SECTION 8 Study Skills: Strategies for Learning and Testing Adapted from “Thriving in College & Beyond,” by Joseph B. Cuseo, Viki Sox Fecas, and Aaron Thompson
  • Stages in Learning: Perception
    • This is about getting information into your brain
    • Perception requires attention
    • Two key sensory channels for learning:
      • Hearing, such as listening to lectures
      • Seeing, such as reading
  • Stages in Learning: Storage
    • Three forms of memory:
      • Short-term, lasting for seconds
      • Working, consciously holding it and working on it
      • Long-term, storing something and being able to recall it
    • Memory is like a computer document
      • Information on the screen
      • Work on the document
      • Save the information for later retrieval
    • Hippocampus
      • Coding: process of transferring from working to long-term
      • Memory trace: a physical or biological trace in the brain
  • Stages in Learning: Retrieval
    • “ Tip of the tongue”
  • Listening to Lectures
    • Focus your attention through selective attention
      • Information instructors put in writing
      • Information presented in first and last few minutes
      • Information communicated through v erbal (key phrases, repeating), vocal (pitch and rate) and nonverbal (facial expressions, body movement) cues
    • Seating: Maximum attention, minimum distraction
      • Front and center is best
    • Social seating: Affects behavior
    • Posture: Check yourself to see if you’re listening
      • Upright and leaning forward
  • Taking Notes
    • Get organized: Each idea gets its own paragraph
    • Make them yours: Don’t rely on others’ notes
    • Don’t stop: If you don’t understand, keep going
    • Compare: Consult syllabus to see where you are
    • Arrive early: Review your notes and assignments
    • Missing links: Check for gaps, incomplete thoughts
    • Reflect: Review as soon as possible
      • Take notes on your notes
        • Translate technical information into your own words
        • Reorganize your notes to group related ideas together
  • Reading Textbooks
    • Before reading
      • See how assigned reading fits into overall book and course
      • Preview chapters through headings, outlines, summaries
    • During reading
      • Read selectively by noting or highlighting key concepts
      • Adjust reading speed to subject matter
      • Look up meaning of unfamiliar words
      • Take written notes on your reading
    • After reading
      • Finish with a short review of your notes and highlighting
      • Collaborate with peers
      • Look at how other textbooks treat a concept
  • Study Strategies
    • Minimize distractions: Don’t multitask
    • Find meaning in terms: Do vocabulary
    • Compare and contrast: What do you already know?
    • Integrate information: Organize it together
    • Divide and conquer: Distributed practice method
    • Part-to-whole method: Break it up, then put it together
    • Begin with review: Start new study with review of previous study
    • Change things up: Study different things in different places
    • Use all your senses: Diversify your “memory traces”
    • Emotional learning: Intensity strengthens memory
    • Study groups: Learn through social interaction
  • Memorization Strategies: Mnemonic Devices
    • Meaningful association: “Spring forward, fall back”
    • Organization: 208-282-4407 vs. 2-0-8-2-8-2-4-4-0-7
    • Visualization: > means “greater than,” eats smaller items
    • Rhythm and rhyme: “I before E, except after C”
    • Acrostics: FOIL or Every Good Boy Does Fine (treble)
    • Link system: Make a list, arrange it, make associations between each
    • Loci system: Take a familiar location, associate list of items with elements of location, take an imaginary walk
  • Test-taking Strategies: Before the Test
    • Be well-prepared, don’t cram, and get good sleep
    • Adjust study strategies to test type
      • Recognition: multiple choice, true-false, matching
      • Recall: short answer, essay
        • Paired-associate recall: memory for single piece of information
        • Free recall: memory for two or more, in any sequence
        • Serial recall: memory for two or more, in specific sequence
        • Recitation: active retrieval, clear feedback, your own understanding
        • Creation of retrieval cues: catchwords and acronyms
    • Match study environment to test environment
  • Test-taking Strategies: Day of the Test
    • Come fully equipped
    • Eat to learn
      • Eat breakfast
      • Make it a light meal
      • Eat fruit instead of candy for energy
      • Avoid caffeine
    • Arrive early
    • Sit in the same seat
  • Test-taking Strategies: During the Test
    • Write down mnemonic devices and hard-to-remember terms, formulas, equations
    • Answer easier questions first
      • Makes efficient use of time, gets points under your belt
    • Overcome memory block with strategies
      • Guided retrieval, recall related materials, trust your subconscious
    • Manage test anxiety
      • Focus on here and now, focus on test, don’t focus on time, be positive, keep the test in perspective
    • Multiple choice
      • Look for qualifying words, longest answers, middle answers
    • Don’t be afraid to change answers
  • Test-taking Strategies: During the Test
    • Essay questions
      • Outlines
        • Remember major points
        • Improve organization
        • Have an idea in advance to reduce anxiety
        • Outline can substitute for incomplete questions
      • Get to the point
      • Answer precisely and completely
      • Cite specific evidence
      • Leave extra space for additions after further recall
      • Proofread; neatness counts
      • Review and double-check before turning it in
  • Test-taking Strategies: After the Test
    • Troubleshoot errors and lost points
    • Seek quality feedback
      • Specific
      • Prompt
      • Early in the learning process
    • Did you have the information you needed?
    • Did you have the information, but not study it?
    • Did you know the information, but not well enough?
    • Did you study the material, but not understand it?
    • Did you know the material, but fail to retrieve it?
    • Did you know the answer, but make a careless mistake?