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How to study effectively at home

2 November 2020

a financial services student studying effectively at home

Remote learning is becoming increasingly popular, with many people across the UK turning to online courses to enhance their knowledge and skills and to boost their career prospects. There are many different remote learning programmes available, including the accredited online courses offered by Simply Academy. To get the most out of them, people have to be able to work independently at home and manage their time effectively.

In this blog, we look at what you can do to study well at home and how you can improve your current routine, and we offer advice on how to revise for exams.

Can you study at home?

The answer to this depends on what it is that you want to study. However, a rising number of qualifications can be obtained through online learning, giving you the chance to study at home. In fact, because of the coronavirus pandemic, studying from home has become more mandatory for a large number of students – at least for the time being.

In the past, it would have been hard to make this work, but with faster home broadband speeds, greater availability and affordability of technology such as laptops and PCs and software that facilitates remote learning, it’s become a convenient – and often preferred – alternative to traditional learning in a classroom.

How to study well at home

There are various things you can do to help you to learn your course material quickly and effectively. Examples of this include:

  • Getting enough sleep so that you feel rested enough to concentrate effectively
  • eating good ‘brain food’ before study sessions
  • putting together a study timetable at the outset of your course
  • creating an area that is dedicated to study sessions
  • planning breaks to help you maintain concentration
  • removing all distractions from your study area
  • documenting any topics you need to remember or improve on.

How to study better at home

Even if you feel that you are studying relatively well, it could still help to look for areas to improve on. It’s not always easy to tell if you are absorbing the course material effectively, and as you’ll only properly find out when it comes to the exam, you need to do all you can to be as prepared as possible for the big day.

Start by assessing your current studying habits. For example, if you feel like you’re becoming too stressed or simply aren’t taking in the information, it could be that you’re working too hard, so you should consider having more breaks and setting limits over how long you’ll study in any one session.

Other changes you could make to improve how effective your study sessions are include using acronyms or visualisations to remember specific pieces of information, clarifying anything you don’t understand with your tutor or changing the format of your notes to ensure that they’re as punchy and memorable as possible.

How to revise at home

Developing effective study methods is vital for getting the most out of your course, and it’s just as crucial that you know how best to revise at home in preparation for exams.

Tips for revising effectively include:

  • Sleeping and eating well
  • reflecting on the course material weeks or even months before
  • revising in moderation and taking regular breaks
  • taking concise notes
  • leaving phones and other distractions in another room
  • setting out a timetable for revision which builds up to your exam
  • leaving revision notes with important facts around your home
  • reading the course material out loud 
  • creating your own organised, quiet space for revision
  • mixing up your methods of revision (reading, quizzes, flashcards, mock exams etc).
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