How to be an Effective and Successful Student

Effective and Successful Student

Education is a crucial part of being able to craft a good life for yourself. It opens you up to new opportunities and expands your mind to see the world in different ways. It is also a challenge that comes with years of hard work and patience. Deciding to become a student and committing your time to learning specific skills or gaining knowledge in a particular subject is a huge undertaking. There are ways of studying that can make your life easier and push you to achieve your educational goals. Here are a few tips to help you get started.


It might seem simple, but being a good student starts with being a good listener. Learn to absorb information and connect it to what you already know by paying attention to the world around you. The more you listen, the more you will be able to discern between truth and misinformation, fact, and opinion. This skill will help you filter useful and useless thoughts to create a more solid understanding of a topic. It will also help you to figure out which sources are worth paying attention to and which you should be warier of.

Find Your Passion

Studying something you aren’t interested in will make your student experience much harder than it has to be. Instead, try to find a subject you are passionate about. Not every lesson will be exciting, and not every topic will appeal to you, but if you can find something that sparks your passion, then you’ll find it much easier to concentrate in the long run. For example, if you care about people and are passionate about making the lives of others better, take a look at the courses on offer at Wilkes University. There’s no need to make studying even more difficult than it already is.

Identify Relevant Reading Material

Not everything your lecturers, tutors, or teachers tell you to read will be entirely relevant to you, depending on the type of subject you are studying. In areas that require precise knowledge, such as science, technology, engineering, or maths, it’s for the best if you are able to cover as much of the recommended reading as you can. However, in other types of subjects, you are doing yourself a disservice if you fail to find your niche and follow your personal interests within the subject. Look for material that influences and enhances your existing knowledge, and don’t waste time reading something that adds no value to your education. This time can be better spent looking for more relevant sources and texts.

Take Smarter Notes

How you take notes during lessons, tutorials, and lectures will make a big difference in how easily you study before an exam or assignment. Your notes must be clear, well organized, and coherent. Avoid the temptation many students face to hurriedly write down everything your teacher says. This will waste your time and none of the information will sink in. Remember, paying attention is a student’s most valuable skill. Reword or summarize your teacher’s lesson into your own words. This process helps you digest the information and place it more firmly within your brain for later access.

Research Outside Your Assignments

Like finding something you’re passionate about within your studies, you should do your own outside research. It might sound like adding an unnecessary burden to your already heavy workload, but filling in your knowledge with information around your chosen topic can help to add depth and dimension to your assignments and exams. A well-rounded approach to gaining knowledge is more effective than simply sticking to what your teachers give you.

Collaborate with Other Students

Even if you don’t consider yourself to be a particularly social person, there is much value in studying with other people in your class. Sharing information and insights builds your collective confidence in what you’re learning. You can bounce ideas off each other and use each other’s notes to compare and contrast different views on the same subject. Again, this is helpful for filling in the gaps in your knowledge in a conscious and intentional way.

Make the Most of Your Educators

Most schools, colleges, and universities encourage their students to contact their teachers whenever they need to. There is no shame in asking questions, only in remaining willfully ignorant. If your tutor has an office hour each week dedicated to speaking with students one on one, use this opportunity to squeeze as much out of your education as possible.

Manage Your Time Better

Good time management is crucial for effective studying. Many people have the tendency to procrastinate until the last minute then stressfully rush their assignments just before the deadline. Avoid this unnecessary panic by carefully planning your time and dedicating allotted hours to different tasks throughout the week, month, and semester. Spreading your workload evenly means you won’t have to cram it all in at the end. You can find different methods of dividing your time, such as the Pomodoro method, which aims to keep you on track to meet your goals.

Remember the Value of Rest

While it’s important to use your time wisely and spend as much of it as possible studying, your rest is equally valuable. Your brain can’t process and retain the information you put into it without proper sleep. Some students get into the habit of staying awake all night to finish their reading or assignment. Over time, this can quickly have a negative impact on your ability to learn new information and keep it in your head. Good-quality sleep and regular breaks from study sessions are essential to effective work.

Keep Your Eyes on the Prize

Sometimes, being a student is so overwhelming that you might consider giving up or trying something else. Occasionally, this is the right decision, but not always. If your education will lead you closer to achieving your goals by setting you up for a life you want to live, stick at it, and remember why you started. Having that qualification in your hand will make all your hard work feel so worthwhile.