Changing up lecture, study methods may help students

By Alyssa Pracz

I’m sure everyone can relate to having that one class that you just could never really grasp. No matter how much you study, it just never seems to make sense. You sit in class and no matter how hard you try to concentrate, you just feel like you can’t get a full understanding of what’s going on.

It’s not always the student’s fault though, because some of the methods that some teachers use aren’t fitted to their students’ needs. There are a lot of classes where teachers just lecture and put up PowerPoint slides.

It’s not always an effective way of learning for everyone and other methods should be put to use to get out of the same mundane routine. Even if you don’t face that as a challenge, there are different tactics that can be applied to help your studying methods.

Different kinds of people learn better depending on their learning type. This can affect the way a student performs in terms of in-classroom engagement as well as test grades. Visual learners process information better through seeing things, auditory learners process information better through hearing things and kinesthetic learners process information better through experiencing and doing things.

If teachers occasionally added more variety to their lectures by maybe having discussions for those who understand better through active participation, or providing charts and diagrams for the visual learners, it could be beneficial to the outcome of the class for a lot of students and perhaps generate more interest in the subject overall.

If you are unsure of the best way you learn or still experience difficulties, there are ways to help retain information that may help your performance as a student. Oftentimes students think they understand the material for a test better than they actually do. This can be referred to as the illusion of knowing.

“Deep comprehension of material requires a lot of work,” said psychology professor Keith Millis. Millis explained that to have a deep understanding of something, you can’t simply read the text once, but rather several times engagingly.

Some suggestions are to generate questions while reading, put things into your own words by paraphrasing the material, try to explain the major concepts to yourself or even just read the text aloud.

In order to retain information, students must first realize that most of the time they don’t know the information as well as they think they do. By using these procedures suggested by professor Millis, they will not only help you comprehend better but also let you know when you do not comprehend something as well.

Everyone has his or her own way of doing things, so for some, it might not make a difference just sitting in a lecture hall and listening.

But for other students, switching up the occasional routine and applying study methods that are best-suited to your needs may drastically improve your academic performance.