Looking for ways to improve your study skills?
If so, don’t neglect one tool that has worked since the early days of one-room school houses—the study group.
Many college professors agree that group study enhances students’ performances, both in class discussions, as well as on tests.
Why does it work? Group study pays off because it brings about changes in two ways: it forces students to alter their old ways of thinking and it changes their less effective patterns of behavior.
In a group environment, students are less likely to procrastinate. After all, it’s easy to put off an assignment when you only have yourself to answer to, isn’t it? But when you know you have a whole group of people counting on you, you’ll be more likely to get the job done.
Group study also encourages students to explain things aloud. By speaking to and listening to others, students often improve on recall ability, or ability to remember information on test day.
Students who study with others are also forced to become more organized. Once you learn to date and label your notes, you’ll see that organized notes make much more sense at the end of the week than the jumbled, mix and match variety.
One more great benefit of group discussion is that the many perspectives improve your chances of anticipating test questions. Group members will always bring up ideas and thoughts you’d never considered. The various views are sure to pay off on test day!
Finally, you’ll likely find that the benefit of group study reaches far beyond the good results on test day. It will build self-confidence that you can use for the rest of your life. Speaking to small groups will prepare students for speaking to larger groups in the future—or more official groups such as college admission panels or hiring boards.
So go ahead and start building a group of like-minded students who share your goals for success. Be sure to develop a set of study rules to establish the “where’s” and “how’s” and stick by them. The results will show on report card day!