6 Ways to Be an Effective Learner
- Jan 13, 2015
- MyPrivateTutor Qatar
When I was fifteen, I was astonished to notice how swiftly some of my classmates learned their lessons, be it Math or English Literature. Once, our English teacher declared a surprise test in the class. We had to write a few interpretations of some speeches of Mark Antony, from Julius Caesar.
For most of us, it came as a rude shock, as if the sky had fallen on our heads. For, that topic was just discussed the previous day and we were yet to revise Antony’s speeches in that particular Shakespearean play. As I glanced around helplessly, I caught sight of some students who feverishly scribbled away the answers, and even scored well in the test!
Obviously, I was taken aback. And I wondered, ‘Are these people human ‘machines’? Well, of course not. They are very much ‘normal’ human beings, not aliens on earth. Probably, they were employing some intelligent skills to accelerate their learning process.
What then, was their secret to quick learning? And, could anybody master the techniques of learning anything effectively? You know what I mean. Some students are bright while others might be just good or even average. So how can all kinds of learners benefit from the tips of emerging as an effective learner? Let me reveal the six best ways of learning anything faster, in the following paragraphs:
- Improve your memory: Before you start learning, you must make attempts at improving your memory. Follow some study hacks to strengthen memory, like reading your notes aloud. Or, taking notes when your teacher is explaining a concept in the classroom. Some of my friends kept postponing some topics for the last day before exams, and tried to cram up everything in a single evening. You can even introduce meditation into your daily or weekly routine to increase your focus and concentration. Now, you’re ready to learn your lessons.
- Use different learning techniques: Learning can be become dull if you utilize the same learning technique multiple times. So, usher in some variety in your next learning session. If you generally learn after listening to your teacher’s explanations or podcasts, alter it after a while. For a change, try taking notes during a lecture. You can do one more thing. After you finish listening to the teacher, go through the chapter carefully. If you stumble against something, go back to your teacher and clarify your doubts, to learn that subject easily.
- Gain practical knowledge: What comes to your mind when you think about learning something? I’m sure you start imagining an instructor giving lectures. Or, you see yourself reading textbooks or looking up websites for collecting study material. I agree, traditional learning methods (of gathering information and jotting it on paper) are crucial to gaining knowledge. But, have you ever tried receiving exposure to practical learning techniques? Trust me, it helps! If you are studying about films, watch movies directed by renowned directors. Make trips to historical spots you are reading about.
- Test yourself: Friends, if you feel maximizing your study time would assure you highest scores, you are mistaken. When you learn anything, you also need to recall the idea to make sure that you retain whatever you have imbibed. Otherwise, what is the use of learning? So, test yourself to find out what you have learnt. Ask your teacher to set some questions, and sit down to solve them. Try to finish the test within a specified time limit. You will discover that you’re able to remember your lessons more easily.
- Teach another person: Another trick to be an effective learner is to teach whatever you have learnt, to another person. This way, you can identify the areas that you haven’t been able to grasp. So you can approach your teacher for help concerning those grey areas and fill up the knowledge gap. Moreover, if you explain a concept to your friend, he too might come up with certain questions. This will encourage you to think more critically about your topic and gain a deeper insight about it.
- Look up answers: We have a tendency to struggle to recall certain definitions or formulas while studying. Believe me, even the most intelligent learner experiences this problem. During the initial phase of learning, it’s natural to forget the details. But don’t waste your time trying to remember them. Tell yourself that you would master the concept soon and refer to your notes or textbooks, or other study materials if you have any. We learn by trial and error, and to err is human. This would enable you to learn more efficiently.
If you use these tips, I am quite certain you can learn anything effectively. It can be Mathematical formulas. Or, balancing Chemical equations. Or learning how tom play the guitar, or even a new foreign language. Keep thinking about ways to make your learning sessions interesting. Because, you must remember this, the secret to learning anything new, is enjoying it so much that you are not even aware of how the time passes.
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