Concentration

·         Having trouble staying excited about differential equations or the causes of the fall of Rome?  Find yourself reading and re-reading the same paragraph or page?  Nodding off, and losing track of big chunks of time?  Here are some things you can do to stay on track:

·         Don’t study similar subjects back-to-back.  Sociology and political science information will run together in your mind.  Break it up with math, biology, etc. 
Examine your study place.  Noisy?  Full of Distractions?  Change locale!

·         Study in the same place every day/night.  This gets your brain conditioned for study as soon as you sit down in your study area. 
As soon as you realize you’re daydreaming, put a check in the margin of your notes or book.  Count the checks at the end of a session; try to make this number smaller each time you read! Go back and read or study where you have put check marks.   

·         If you’re fading rapidly, stand up, face the other way, sit down and get back to work.   

·         Take short breaks (10 minutes) every hour or so.  Get up, walk around, talk to someone, get a snack, etc.   

·         Work while standing up for a while.  It’s hard to daydream while standing!   

·         If bothered about something, and you find yourself thinking of it instead of your notes or textbook, take out a piece of paper, write down what is bothering you, and then throw the paper away.  It’s a way of telling yourself, “Okay, get it out of your system.”   

·         Make deals with yourself.  For every hour of study, watch one TV show later.  For an English paper completed, go to a movie on the weekend.  For every three hours of studying, make one phone call. Stick to your plans…don’t reward yourself if you don’t complete the deal.   

·         Study with others.   Get a group together from class and meet regularly to go over notes/text.  This works if it’s well organized.  Don’t let it become a chatting session.  Don’t choose people who are doing worse than you in the class; go for the superstars, if possible.  If you need a place to study in groups, come to Tutoring and Academic Assistance Programs.  We’re open 8-5 daily. 

 

 

Info from: UI Tutoring and Academic Assistance Programs