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Build Study Skills (A Quick Guide)

An overview of some basic study skills and strategies to set you up for success in your courses!

Place Your Assignments on Your Master Calendar and Create Plans for Completing Them Before They Are Due

Come up with an organizational plan that works for you. Then, write down all of your assignments for all of your classes with their due dates in your calendar, planner, smart phone or whatever you use for organization. Successful students will also schedule when to start those assignments and have an idea of how long it will take to complete them.

Complete All of Your Assignments

There will be things that you are more interested in doing than your assignments and unexpected life happenings that will come up. However, students who earn good grades have the motivation and discipline to complete all of their assignments. In addition, course assignments often build on each other, adding new concepts or skills with each new assignment. Do yourself a favor and complete each assignment.

Have Someone Read Your Papers Before You Submit Them

You might be surprised to learn how many students turn in papers with spelling, grammar and punctuation errors that could have been easily corrected by using a spellchecker program or having someone read your paper. Western's Writing Center has tutors and instructors who will read your paper, give feedback, make suggestions, and help shape ideas. They can also meet with you to help you with any stage of your writing. This is a free service for Western students and it's a great idea to take advantage of it. 

Another strategy is to read your writing aloud to yourself. You may catch errors when you read aloud that you might not catch when reading your writing. Remember that it is always the students’ responsibility to have papers proofread, not someone else’s.

Study Groups

Study groups can allow for shared resources, new perspectives, answers for questions, faster learning, increased confidence, and increased motivation. Studying with a friend can also help you develop good habits and stay accountable to reviewing the material. Your instructor may arrange groups formally or you can talk to your classmates to see if there are others who would be interested in forming a study group.

You can also reach out to the Learning Commons to request a peer tutor if you'd like to have some additional support. 

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