Top Ten Learning Skills from the University of Western Ontario's Student Development Centre

Coleen S Dalton – Learning Skills Services

There’s lots of information out there about how to have a successful university career. Here are ten of the top ideas that will help ensure you’re ready!

  1. Location, Location, Location...
    Serious about getting work done? Find a good location that limits distractions.

  2. Make It a Habit: Do Coursework Every Day
    Cramming is not conducive to understanding and retaining large amounts of information. Spending time on your courses each day is the best way to learn.

  3. Help Exists!
    Whether you're an 'A' student or a 'D' student, you can strengthen your skills. Get to know your professors and tutorial assistants. Use study guides and help centres.

  4. Write It Down
    Use a day planner or wall calendar. Plan time for coursework, assignments and exams.

  5. Get Energized - Eat, Exercise, Sleep
    Fatigue and stress weaken memory and comprehension. Eat properly, exercise regularly, and get adequate sleep.

  6. Go to Class Prepared and Take Good Notes
    Don't miss class. Someone else's notes can’t replace creating your own. If something doesn't make sense, ask a question!

  7. Lectures and Textbooks: What's the BIG Picture?
    Use course outlines, tables of content, and headings and subheadings to organize information.

  8. Be active with your course material!
    Generate examples, create mnemonics, identify key words, highlight textbooks, or add margin notes. Improve your memory by being creative and interested.

  9. Think You'll Remember Key Points? Prove It.
    Before a test, recall information without looking at notes or textbooks and by doing practice questions.

  10. Be Test Smart
    Don't lose marks because of test-writing errors. Use strategies to tackle different types of tests. Read instructions, budget time to marks, and do less difficult questions first to build confidence.

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