Study habits?

  1. Hello, ladies and gentlemen. This term, I took my first college-level biology course ever, which my advisor said would make A & P make more sense. The tests are killing me...I'm hovering between a C and D. She said if I get at least a C on the final, I will get a C in the class. So at the very least, I want a strong C on the final. One of my test scores will be replaced, if I due well on the portion of the final covering that test. One test score was extremely low, because the whole thing got messed up, and I had to take it on other day, due to an error she made. So I got like 48% on it, due to the mix up, and having to wait so long to take the test...even though I reviewed, I still did terrible. I also am going to make up a test in math, after finals are done. I wish I wouldn't of taken this bio and math together. But it's too late to complain about that now.

    It seems that everything in biology comes together as a big picture, but often times that will come together after I've already taken the test. A lot of good that does my then! So in some respects, I'm thinking A&P will be more understandable, since it focuses on the big picture of the body, just just a cell, which was never really put in context in this class very much. She didnt' necesarily agree that A&P would be easier...but at least I won't be taking it with classes that won't take up so much of my time. She also recomended taking Medical Terminology prior to A&P, so I am taking that next term, along with my last math class, Stats, and a sociology class.

    At least, out of this class, if nothing else, I've learned some test-taking skills and study habits which I never embraced before. Now I do stuff like read the whole homework assignment, and highlight key items, before doing it. Sometimes I scan the chapters, so then when I do the homework, it's easier to find answers. I've also started reading all the test questions, and highlighting key points. So before even answering any, I've read through them all once.

    What study strategies and test taking strategies work good for y'all?
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  2. 21 Comments

  3. by   catzy5
    Quote from -Midget-
    Hello, ladies and gentlemen. This term, I took my first college-level biology course ever, which my advisor said would make A & P make more sense. The tests are killing me...I'm hovering between a C and D. She said if I get at least a C on the final, I will get a C in the class. So at the very least, I want a strong C on the final. One of my test scores will be replaced, if I due well on the portion of the final covering that test. One test score was extremely low, because the whole thing got messed up, and I had to take it on other day, due to an error she made. So I got like 48% on it, due to the mix up, and having to wait so long to take the test...even though I reviewed, I still did terrible. I also am going to make up a test in math, after finals are done. I wish I wouldn't of taken this bio and math together. But it's too late to complain about that now.

    It seems that everything in biology comes together as a big picture, but often times that will come together after I've already taken the test. A lot of good that does my then! So in some respects, I'm thinking A&P will be more understandable, since it focuses on the big picture of the body, just just a cell, which was never really put in context in this class very much. She didnt' necesarily agree that A&P would be easier...but at least I won't be taking it with classes that won't take up so much of my time. She also recomended taking Medical Terminology prior to A&P, so I am taking that next term, along with my last math class, Stats, and a sociology class.

    At least, out of this class, if nothing else, I've learned some test-taking skills and study habits which I never embraced before. Now I do stuff like read the whole homework assignment, and highlight key items, before doing it. Sometimes I scan the chapters, so then when I do the homework, it's easier to find answers. I've also started reading all the test questions, and highlighting key points. So before even answering any, I've read through them all once.

    What study strategies and test taking strategies work good for y'all?

    for what its worth I found Bilogy very challanging but I took it 20 years ago, I remember feeling the same way the big picture just never happened for me. I also squeeked by with a C from a very generous teacher.

    I ended up taking ap 101 this semester however I took a basic ap course offered for the LVN canidates it was a huge help! I ended up getting an A in both classes. I found AP to be very different from general biology, I think Micro will be my hardest class yet hopefully my new found science experience (ap100, 101 and chemistry) will be of service to me, I feel micro is more like the basic bio where you learn the intricate details of the cell and functions very abstract stuff. Anatomy atleast you can see and put things together.
  4. by   BSNtobe2009
    My biology class was taught by a guy waiting to enter med school and at a CC where it was specifically geared toward nursing, but I didn't know it at the time.

    Our exams were 100% essay, consisted of 6 questions, and we had to come in the evenings to take them because they took anywhere from 2 to 3 hours to write.

    I failed the first one, but got 96% or better on every test after that.
  5. by   lisabeth
    I will tell you one thing that will help in every science class after biology, and that will be chemistry. I didnt take it, because no one advised me too, and I have done good but it would make learning all of the chemical reactions and other material so much easier. Nutrition has been somewhat of a challenge since I havent had it, and A&P would have been easier in parts to understand too. Just a little tip.

    Quote from -Midget-
    Hello, ladies and gentlemen. This term, I took my first college-level biology course ever, which my advisor said would make A & P make more sense. The tests are killing me...I'm hovering between a C and D. She said if I get at least a C on the final, I will get a C in the class. So at the very least, I want a strong C on the final. One of my test scores will be replaced, if I due well on the portion of the final covering that test. One test score was extremely low, because the whole thing got messed up, and I had to take it on other day, due to an error she made. So I got like 48% on it, due to the mix up, and having to wait so long to take the test...even though I reviewed, I still did terrible. I also am going to make up a test in math, after finals are done. I wish I wouldn't of taken this bio and math together. But it's too late to complain about that now.

    It seems that everything in biology comes together as a big picture, but often times that will come together after I've already taken the test. A lot of good that does my then! So in some respects, I'm thinking A&P will be more understandable, since it focuses on the big picture of the body, just just a cell, which was never really put in context in this class very much. She didnt' necesarily agree that A&P would be easier...but at least I won't be taking it with classes that won't take up so much of my time. She also recomended taking Medical Terminology prior to A&P, so I am taking that next term, along with my last math class, Stats, and a sociology class.

    At least, out of this class, if nothing else, I've learned some test-taking skills and study habits which I never embraced before. Now I do stuff like read the whole homework assignment, and highlight key items, before doing it. Sometimes I scan the chapters, so then when I do the homework, it's easier to find answers. I've also started reading all the test questions, and highlighting key points. So before even answering any, I've read through them all once.

    What study strategies and test taking strategies work good for y'all?
  6. by   stpauligirl
    Quote from TexasAngel
    I will tell you one thing that will help in every science class after biology, and that will be chemistry. I didnt take it, because no one advised me too, and I have done good but it would make learning all of the chemical reactions and other material so much easier. Nutrition has been somewhat of a challenge since I havent had it, and A&P would have been easier in parts to understand too. Just a little tip.
    :yeahthat: Chemistry is sooooo important and will make a big difference....it did for me! Unfortunately a lot of people won't listen at my school and will therefore encounter difficulty in A&P and MIcro.
    Actually starting this Spring Chem is required before Micro.
  7. by   -Midget-
    Okay, it's time for me to start writting and highlighting in my book. It seems that's what the smart people do. I'm just still stuck in the highschool mindset of you write in the book, you die. But it is *my* book...therefore I can write in them! So I will. Maybe that will help me to remember some stuff. Or at least make it quickre to find if I need to refer to it later.
  8. by   KEVO05
    Alot of my friends have told me I should write a book about studying habits, because I'm some what anal about studying, and I am a perfectionist to the tenth degree. So I'll offer some advice...

    1.) Study when you are at the peak of your day. For me it is late at night, and that is the only time I study, because when I try to study when I really don't want to, I don't remember anything.

    2.) Make sure there are NO distractions I have to study with my IPOD in my ears so no one can bug me, also I tend to study better in a CLEAN area, because I mess it up when I study with notes everywhere.

    3.) This sounds odd, but study less, but more often. Break up your notes into sections, and study one section for about 30 minutes and ONLY that section. Quit go get a bite to eat something...come back review, and move on to your next area. I study in about 30 minute blocks 5-7 times a day.

    4.) READ IT: Read your notes first...see what doesn't make sense, then go to the text book and only read what doesn't make sense. Don't waste your time on reading things that you understand already.

    5.) SEE IT: Just a quick glance over my notes before I start a good study session helps me remember the main concepts. Also, this works for pictures and graphs when you are studying your notes look at images to reinforce the concept.

    6.) HEAR IT: Read your notes ALOUD to yourself, sounds DUMB, but it really does work. Also, if you are really OCD about your grades like me...record it and play it in your sleep!!!

    7.) WRITE IT: Before every test I re write all my notes, and it helps sooo much because when I take my tests I can actually visualize it word for word.

    8.) PRAY!!!

    9.) Don't cram. I always preach this to my friends as a visual. Picture cleaning a medicine cabinent and shooving everything in there quickly...when you open the cabinent its all mixed up not organized, just like your head when you cram something you might think you know it, but you can easily become confused.

    10.) Find a friend and actually teach the material to each other. If you can teach the material you know it.

    **For Math Classes**
    When working problems only work a certain type take a break come back if you can still work the HARDEST problem of that type then I think you are good.

    For me the best thing is to not take all your notes at one time, it can be overwhelming, break up your notes get down one concept then add the next then add the next. TRUST ME IT WORKS!!!


    Hope this helps you some, PM me if you need any more advice.
  9. by   -Midget-
    Thanks for the excelent advice you guys have offered thus far! I totally agree about breaking study sessions up into shorter things. I usually always rewrite my notes, or the instructors notes which she gives us. Someone also mentioned reading the end of the chapter first, which sumarizes the key points - great idea! In this book, there is a preview of each section, too...so I start there, then go read the review sections in the back. Then read the chapter. I read out loud a lot...especially if I'm having trouble understanding a concept.
  10. by   catzy5
    Quote from -Midget-
    Okay, it's time for me to start writting and highlighting in my book. It seems that's what the smart people do. I'm just still stuck in the highschool mindset of you write in the book, you die. But it is *my* book...therefore I can write in them! So I will. Maybe that will help me to remember some stuff. Or at least make it quickre to find if I need to refer to it later.

    I do this, many people still don't because they want to sell their books, but my science books are mine for life. I highlight to understand the text better, I read a section and highlight the main points, or I take the outline and underline the points from the outline. I also rewrite my notes (or outline) It helps me remember better.
  11. by   CuriousMe
    I've done pretty well in my science courses (A in Cell Biology, A in Chem, and either an A or A+ in A&P1...I'm still waiting to hear which grade)....I'll let you know what I do to study.....but also tell you that the way I came up with these things is by knowing what kind of leaner I am....I'm both a strong auditory and kinesthetic learn, so I've organized my study with these things in mind.

    One thing that I try to do is always read the chapter in the book before a lecture...even if I don't understand the reading a 100%, the lecture usually clears it up and if it doesn't, I have a much more organized question to ask in class.

    I don't mark up my textbooks, for no other reason then it doesn't help me at all....so don't start writing all over your books, just because "smart people do"....I guarantee you that's not why they're marking them up. They are marking them up with a specific intent....maybe they underline or highlight vocab they want to stress, or maybe they write questions in the margins...whatever....but they certainly don't just mark up the text book so it looks marked. I would just try to figure out what you think you're missing when you read....then see if marking in some way helps you not miss it.

    I don't have the luxury to study at my peak time of the day, I work full time and go to school full time.....I study whenever I'm not in class, working or sleeping I do have a study schedule though. My school's Science Resource Center opens at 7am. I'm generally in there by 7:30 and my classes start at 10:00am and 11:00am on different days. So, I have blocks of study time in the mornings (if I tried to study at home at that time in the morning it would never work, my bed would be faaaar to close to me to resist it's pull ). I also have either 1.5 or 2 hour blocks between class and work, so I use that as scheduled study time. I don't have class or work on Fridays....so that's my study marathon day. The point of this rambling paragraph is to get a study schedule and stick to it.

    Going along with the whole concept of I study anytime I'm not in class or at work is that I always carry at least one textbook and flashcards with me. You never know when you're going to have to stand in line or wait for a bus....it can't hurt to review things again during this time.

    I depend on my study group....it seems we pull each other through it. Studying with a group shows the holes in your knowledge. Well it does for me anyway. I know that after I've studied and think I know it, I'll often meet with my study group and as we talk about different concepts, I'll see holes that I thought I knew, but need more work on. It's nice to have those holes become apparent BEFORE taking the test.

    The last thing I'll tell you is that I record all of my lectures on my laptop, then I go ahead and put them on my iPod, so I can listen to them wherever I am. I also listen to the lecture as I go over my notes.

    Best of luck, I hope you figure out what works best for you!!!

    Peace,
    Cathie
  12. by   stpauligirl
    Quote from catzy5
    I do this, many people still don't because they want to sell their books, but my science books are mine for life. I highlight to understand the text better, I read a section and highlight the main points, or I take the outline and underline the points from the outline. I also rewrite my notes (or outline) It helps me remember better.
    :yeahthat: I also keep my science books, in addition to highlighting I also have written notes and reminders next to certain things, especially tables and pictures. It's just like with children, the dirtier they are at the end of the day the more they have learned....the more scribble in my book the more I have learned
  13. by   arciedee
    I think one of the important things to discover is what type of a learner you are. I found this website that lists the three types of learners and what study traits work best for each:

    Learnng Styles take your free test.

    I'd say that I'm predominantly an auditory learner. I barely take any notes and I find that things tend to stick better in my brain when I study aloud. I felt bad about this for a long time because I'd look around classrooms and see other people furiously writing notes or I'd see their textbooks marked up, but I still did well on tests... it's just a different way of learning.
  14. by   stpauligirl
    Quote from arciedee
    I think one of the important things to discover is what type of a learner you are. I found this website that lists the three types of learners and what study traits work best for each:

    Learnng Styles take your free test.

    I'd say that I'm predominantly an auditory learner. I barely take any notes and I find that things tend to stick better in my brain when I study aloud. I felt bad about this for a long time because I'd look around classrooms and see other people furiously writing notes or I'd see their textbooks marked up, but I still did well on tests... it's just a different way of learning.
    Thanks for posting this link, very interesting. I operate in a foreign language, which complicates things even further... English is not my first language. I think I am a little of all learning styles combined.

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