Inside Tips


Spel_APR11-031No matter how many hours I spent re-reading physics principles, I couldn’t keep the equations straight. Like many students, I was going at it wrong. Reviewing course notes is the most popular study approach (in a recent Student Health 101 survey, 85 percent of respondents said they do this). But research shows it doesn’t necessarily work – unless you’re reviewing those notes the right way.

Fortunately, a vast field of science devoted to memory and retaining information has given us more effective strategies for academic success and some are pretty surprising.

Instead of highlighting and underlining material, which studies suggest does not boost learning or test performance, come at it actively. Here’s how:

  1. Ask yourself questions about your material.
  2. Sketch out diagrams and flowcharts.
  3. Use flashcards.
  4. Take frequent practice tests.
  5. No cramming.

And do not forget to

  1. Switch up on your studying [location].
  2. Grab a tea or coffee.
  3. Eat veggies.
  4. Relish your sleep and exercise.
  5. Practice a musical instrument.

This article, by Maria Yagoda, a 2002 Yale graduate, is reprinted from the April 2015 issue of Student Health 101.

sleep tightStudents adore and crave sleep. When we asked hundreds of you what you’d love to be doing right now, sleeping ranked second — behind only “being with someone I love,” and ahead of eating delicious food, having sex, and other pleasures.

Every time we sleep, we’re taking a luxury nano-vacation. We are “constantly refreshed by little holidays from ourselves,” wrote Iris Murdoch, the English philosopher and author. Read more…

tipsWhich would you go without for a week: your cell phone, your best friend, or good food? Chances are, it’s not your phone.

College students appear to spend almost nine hours per day—more than half our waking hours — on our phones. That includes 1 1⁄2 hours of texting.

Text messages and other phone notifications release dopamine, the same feel-good chemical triggered by eating sugar, having sex and gambling. “We’re not really addicted to our cell phones per se but to the activities on our phones,” says Dr. James Roberts of Baylor University in Waco, Texas, who specializes in the psychology of consumer behavior. Read more…

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