Study! Study! Study! There is no better way to get the grades you want then by cracking open your textbooks, writing up some flash cards, and using your library research tools, right? Well, yes, you’re right.
But you can enhance these techniques! After all, it’s the 21st Century; we have more technology at our fingertips than ever before. I’ve put together five ways to bring your studying to the next level — and possibly gain an edge on the midterms or finals that you’ll be preparing for soon. And if you have anything to add, leave it in the comments!
Distractions, be gone! Focalfilter
Let’s get it out of the way right at the start: we all know it’s nearly impossible to study without constantly checking the SUNY Facebook, @SUNY on Twitter, and getting lost in @SUNY on Instagram. Focalfilter allows you to remove all temptation; this simple download allows you to block all social media sites for however long you need. (But don’t worry — SUNY will still be here when you are done studying!)
Quick quiz? Yes! Studyblue
Did you leave your flashcards in your dorm room? Studyblue allows you to bring the study cards anyplace that your laptop or smartphone can go! You can upload class study materials, create electronic flash cards, take practice quizzes, store notes in the cloud, and connect with others who are studying the same subjects. So put down Angry Birds and Temple Run and, instead, ease your way to an A on your next test!
“Command,” says I. Google Scholar
Ah. Google. It’s the search engine that seemingly answers any question you can think of. Unfortunately, a typical search may return lots of results that can easily distract you from writing that 20 page paper that’s due tomorrow. Instead of searching through the normal Google engine, first search for Google Scholar. This version of Google filters out all of the unnecessary sites and displays the “good and useful” scholarly articles. It not only makes for a better paper; it will give you more free time to hang out with friends and enjoy everything your campus has to offer!
The situation: You finally finish the 20 page research paper you were working on. You’ve spent hours at the library reading through articles, essays and papers. You take a final look at your professor’s grading rubric and realize you forgot your works cited page. But don’t fret! Easybib has an easy way for you to generate all you bibliography and works cited. This site allows you to enter the basic information from your source and then puts it in proper MLA or APA format. (Phew, your extra hour at the library turned into fifteen minutes!)
Music? Definitely! Classical music
Yes, I am advising you to listen to music while you study! Why? Because research points out that ambient beats, like those found in classical music, are proven to help you study and retain more information. With so many apps available, such as Spotify, Pandora and, iTunes, we have a never-ending library of music. So, plug in you headphones and get to work!
Do you have any other good electronic studying tips? Let me know in the comments!
Glenn is a student assistant in the Office of New Media of the State University of New York. He is an undergraduate economics and political science major at the University at Albany in Albany, NY.