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Study Tips for Matrics

Esmarie Cilliers study tips

Top Study Tips for Matics 

  • By Registered Counsellor and SACAP Educator,  Esmarie Cilliers

At the best of times preparing for matric exams is one of the most stressful life experiences, than add another layer. The rollercoaster ride called COVID-19.  

Registered Counsellor and SACAP Educator, Esmarie Cilliers offers some advice: 

Have a study strategy to help you achieve success

Studying for success is not a question of luck or talent alone. Educators and psychologists have researched effective study methods for years and agree that students who have a strategy or a plan on how they are going to study, achieve the best outcomes. Students who follow these methods learn more easily, retain material for longer periods of time, and save themselves hours of study time.

1. Make a study schedule and stick to it.  This schedule must be realistic and achievable. Make sure that you include enough time to rest and do some things that you enjoy.  Block your time for studying specific subjects and stick to those times.

2. Set up a study area for yourself and make sure that you have everything you need – papers, pens, note cards, erasers, paperclips etc.  Place your desk at a quiet place and remove distractions.  Sometimes it can be good if you can have a bit of variety by studying in a different place.

3. Make sure that you drink enough water and have healthy snacks at hand. Drinking adequate amounts of water has been indicated in various studies to improve student’s ability to retain learned information and boost energy.

4. Do not try to multitask – Focus on the subject that you are studying in that specific block of time. 

5.  Choose a study technique that you feel comfortable with and that has shown some positive results for you in the past.  There are a few techniques that you can try to improve your memory.  (Join the SACAP study hack event to learn more.)

6.  It is important to get enough sleep during exam time – the average person needs about 7 to 8 hours of sleep.

7.  Write down your goal and even see if you can find an image that goes with that goal.  Put it up where you can look at it when your energy drop.  This will help you to stay motivated.

The secret to setting-up a good study schedule explained.  

Your working memory can only deal with about 7 to 10 pieces of information at  a time.  The idea of blocking your time helps to make sure that you structure your time in such a way that your brain can deal with the amount of information. 

Elon Musk is famous for his extraordinary productivity and he uses time blocking as well. 

The POMODORO technique works well for studying.  You block for instance 25 minutes to study a specific section of the work. Rest for 5 minutes. Then you have another 25-minute block with a 5-minute rest. One 25-minute sections plus the 5-minute section is called a Pomodoro block and you can block several of these blocks during your study time and allocate specific topics in this time.


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