Study smarter, not harder!
Everyone has a unique approach towards studying, and it is best to know what works for you and what not. It is important that you, as an international student understand how to create a balance between academic and social life, without building up any last minute stress. Here are some effective tips that can help you study smarter:
As an international student, there is a lot to explore in your new host country, but it is also important to keep in mind how you will manage your study schedules. It is best to start early to be in a stronger position when it is time for assessments. Keep in mind that being a non-native, you will take more time to adjust to the country’s education system, unlike your local counterparts.
Build an effective study environment
Understand what works for you. Find a comfortable place to study that allows you to study more effectively. It could be your university’s library, your bedroom, a local café or even a park. Similarly, find out when are you most productive – morning, afternoon or night. Do take frequent breaks while you study to avoid lower concentration levels and drowsiness.
Do not hesitate
If you have any doubts, please ask. There is no need to hesitate when asking your friends and lecturers to help you with your studies. Make it a social activity. You can also make a study group with your friends and other international students. This way, you will also be able to build your network of friends on the campus as well.
Ensure that you have all your books, reference study materials, stationery and folders ready before you start your semister. Create a study plan and paste it on your room’s wall. If you prefer studying on a laptop, try not to get distracted by social media, emails, messaging or any similar social activities.
Create a schedule indicating how much you will study or revise daily. Keep it as realistic as possible, keeping in mind the other activities you might be involved in.
Get your hands on a sample or previous years’ papers to practice as much as possible. You can also time yourself to see how well you fare. This will also help you understand the pattern of the examination and how to structure your answers.
It is normal to be stressed and feel homesick but do not let it affect your academics. Learn to manage it by taking breaks, going out with friends, talking to your family back home at regular intervals, healthy eating and regular exercising.
Use your university resources and support services
Make maximum use of the available study resources. Most universities provide international student support service (which includes specialist staff like counsellors and advisers) who can help you cope with any personal or professional issues you are facing. Attend on-campus workshops and conferences related to your field. Faculty members in universities abroad are extremely supportive and approachable and can be easily contacted to clear any doubts or queries.
Do not over study
This is the most critical thing you need to understand. Some students tend to over study under the pressure of performing well. Understand when to stop. Poor eating, stress and lack of proper sleep can eventually lead to lower grades.