How To Become a Straight A student : The Unconventional Strategies Real College Students Use to Score High While Studying Less.

This book is very interesting especially for those who has problems with their study habits and feel everwhelmed with it. The common complain from students is that they never seem to have enough time to finish all of their work and no matter hard they tried, there always seems to be something else due. This books told us that there’s a phenomenon where As student are usually studying less and still have enough time to do their assignment and also socialized with others like going to a club and have party all night or might be hang out with friends. This results are based by the interviews with a large group of top-scoring undergradueates from Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Columbia,Duke etc. The writer, Cal Newport, the author of How To Win At College, made an interview because he know that those kind of students are existed and he is also one of them. Therefore he would like to give the secret, how to score high while studying less. These are the strategies that made the As student in college score high and still have plenty time to get socialized : 

PART 1 : STUDY BASICS

Step 1.         Manage Your time in five minutes a day           

it is important to jot Down to-do’s and deadlines on a list whenever they arise. The list is a trusted piece of storages, you will see that as a reminder and because of the list, the deadlines will not be lost, It will be scheduled. then transfer there to-dos and deadlines to your calendar every morning. And plan your day each morning by labelling your to-dos with realistic time frames and moving what you don’t have time for to different dates on your calendar. You have to update it every morning to know what you should try to accomplish.

Step 2. Declare war on Procrastination

Keep a work progress journal, and every day record what you wanted to accomplish and whether or not you succeded. After all of your assignment done always write “COMPLITED”. Then when working, eat healthy snacks to maximize your energy such as drink water constantly, monitor your caffeine intake carefully, treat food as a source of energy, not satisfaction and try not to skip meals. And also you can transform horrible tasks into a big event to help you gather the energy to start such as plans your study place on starbucks,etc. try to build work routines to make steady progress on your obligations without expending too much of your limited motivational resources. You should never delay task everyday, try to make a progress everyday. If you simply have more work due than you can handle with a well balanced schedule, therefore choose you hard days in advance to minimize their impact but plans them in advance and write in you calendar as “HARD!” but you should also have to prepare yourself mentally, probably by tell your friends that you are busy on Sunday or Friday so you ask them not to bother you.

Step 3.Choose When, Where and How Long

Try to fit as much work as possible into the morning and afternoon, between classes and obligations. Our effective’s are between we wake up and when we eat dinner.try not to do your assignment to late night because there;s too many distraction that can interrupted you concentrate. It is better to study in isolated locations but you have to take a break every hour. It really helps refresh your mind and facilitates the process of finding new angles and sights when you begin your work again.

PART 2 : QUIZZES AND EXAMS

Step 1 Take Smart Notes

Always go to class and try to take the best notes possible and for non technical courses, capture the big ideas by taking notes in the question/evidence/conclusion format to every lecxturer. For technical courses, record as many sample problems and answers as possible.

Step 2. Demote your assignments

Work a little bit each day on your assignments; avoid suffering from day-before syndrome. try to read only the favored sources on the syllabus in detail, don’t read everything. To decide how much time to spend on supplemental sources, remember the importance hierarchy:

    • readings that make an argument are more important than :
    • readings that describe an event or person, which are more important than :
    • readings that only provide context (i.e., speech transcripts, press clippings).

Take reading notes in the question/evidence/conclusion format Work in groups on problem sets, solve problems on the go, and write up your answers formally the first time.

Step 3. Marshal Your Resources

Figure out exactly what the test will cover by define the challenge such as open or close book, how much time will be available, etc. try to build information at the earliest. Then build a study guide and cluster your notes for nontechnical courses. Also build mega-problem sets for technical courses by do these following :

1.                                         match the lectur to the problem set that covers the same material.

2.                                         copy sample problems from these lecturer notes onto blank sheet of paper. You don’t have to copy the steps or the answers, just the question.

3.                                         label the blank sheet of paper with the date of the lecture. His will help you later figure out where as these problems came from (and more important, where their answers can be found)

4.                                         fasten this sheet with a paper clip to the problem set you matched it to in step one.

In other words, this process transforms your problem sets into mega problem sets by adding extra problems drawn from your lecture notes.  Both technical and non technical courses sometimes require you to do some memorization- formula,artwork,dates,etc and the most efficient way to memorize this information is by using flash cards. And don’t forget to organize and study in the same day.

Step 4 Conquer the Material

Embrace the quiz-and-recall method. It’s the single most efficient way to study. Don’t read the material but write the important question and concepts out by hand.Then spread out memorization over several days. your mind can do only so much at the time.

Step 5. Invest in “Academic Disaster Insurance”

Eliminate the question marks for topics covered in class or from the reading that you don’t understand. try to ask question during the class, develop the habit of talking to your professor briefly after class. And ask classmates soon after class and also come prepared to exam review sessions (if offered).

Step 6 Provide “A+” Answers

You have to review and Look over the whole test first to break the mounting session.then build a time budget,Figure out how much time you have to spend on each question (leaving a ten-minute cushion at the end). Answer the questions in order of increasing difficulty. You mght not know  the best answer but  you can spend some time to devise a reasonable answer. Write out a mini-outline before tackling an essay question, it might seem a waste of time but in truth can be invaluable. And Use any and all leftover time to check and recheck your work.

PART 3 : ESSAYS AND PAPERS

Step 1 Target a Titillating Topic

Start looking for an interesting topic early .

Step 2 Conduct a Thesis-Hunting Expedition

Start with general sources and then follow references to find the more targeted sources where good thesis ideas often hide.

Step 3 Seek a second opinion

A thesis is not a thesis until a professor has approved it.

Step 4 Research like a Machine

Find sources but there’s two different kind of sources : general and specific. It is better if you start from the general source then to the specific one.  Then  Make personal copies of all sources, Annotate the material and Decide if you’re done.

Step 5 Craft a Powerful Story

There is no shortcut to developing a well-balanced and easy-to-follow argument. Try dedicate a good deal of thought over time to getting it right.Describe your argument in a topic-level outline. And Type supporting quotes from sources directly into your outline.

Step 6 Consult Your Expert Panel

Before starting to write, get some opinions on the organization of your argument and your support from classmates and friends who are familiar with the general area of study. The more important the paper, the more people who should review it.

Step 7 Write Without the Agony

Follow your outline and articulate your points clearly  and Write no more than three to five pages per weekday and five to eight pages per weekend day.

Step 8 Fix, don’t Fixate

  • Solid editing requires only three careful passes :
    • The Argument Adjustment Pass : Read the paper carefully on your computer to make sure your argument is clear, fix obvious error, and rewrite where the flow needs improvement.
    • The Out loud Pass : Carefully read out loud a printed copy of your paper, marking any awkward passages or unclear explanations.
    • The Sanity Pass : A final pass over a printed version of the paper to check the overall flow and to root out any remaining errors.

The conclusion is the most effective study habit by time management. It is not the amount of available hours but rather how each hour is spent. The key how they achieve goal is  gain efficiency by compressing work into focused burst. It maximizes the intensity in order to minimize time. Therefore, they actually study less than their classmates. These books  are dedicated to tehnical details and  learning how to follow an efficient schedule. But to accomplish this transformation you will need to control over your life style because scheduling your work is meaningless if you don’t actually work in the time aside and this require self motivation. With this tehnics you will have more free time, more party harder and  you will be able to devote more energy to extracurricular interest. This book is gonna take our first toward to  a much more enjoyable and productive college experience.

6 thoughts on “How To Become a Straight A student : The Unconventional Strategies Real College Students Use to Score High While Studying Less.

  1. Richard says:

    Great review. Thank you very much. I’m going to read this book for sure. I’m studying hard, but with these technics I think I’m going to spend so much less time.
    Thank you again.

  2. You are so interesting! I don’t think I have read anything like that before. So wonderful to discover someone with genuine thoughts on this subject matter. Seriously.. thanks for starting this up. This site is one thing that is needed on the web, someone with some originality!

  3. pasa says:

    you don’t talk about the “heart”, the backbone of the book !😦
    the question/evidence/conclusion note taking and review system

  4. Hi there! This article couldn’t be written any better!
    Looking at this post reminds me of my previous roommate!
    He continually kept talking about this. I will
    forward this article to him. Fairly certain he’s going to have a good read.
    Thanks for sharing!

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