The Ultimate Guide to Freshman Year: Study Habits


Alexa Barnes '18, Writer

Frosh Guide: Top 10 Study Habits

Dear Freshmen,

You’re probably feeling more comfortable at MC these days. But while you may have mastered your locker combination and learned how to navigate the halls, you may still be working out one of the essential aspects of high school – studying. To some people, the prospect of studying can seem like such an intimidating task that they just don’t do it at all–either that, or they spend the night before the test cramming! As a freshman, you can experiment with different study habits and find what works best for you.The Roar has compiled a list of tips to help you in your second quarter of Freshman year.

  1. We are all familiar with the groan of your classmates as your teacher announces that he or she has set a date for a major test. Before you sprint to the Student Center to get your lunch, take a minute to ask your teachers if you can meet with them before the test. While missing a club meeting to review ecology doesn’t sound like a party, you’ll be thankful when you know what to study and aren’t frantically texting your classmates.
  2. If you’re the type of student that likes to have all of your information and notes organized into a study guide, consider sharing. After you’ve finished typing up your study guide, press the share button in the upper right hand corner of your Google Doc to allow your friends or classmates to check it out. This will let them see what you’ve already done and add notes or comments to the document. Not only will you and your crew be prepared for the test, everyone will be asking for an invitation to view your document.
  3. On every study skills list ever, you’ll find color coding. While color coding is a useful tool, it’s not helpful to everyone. If color coding doesn’t do it for you, try highlighting information you don’t know as you read through your notes and study guides. This should help you to identify what you need to know and what you’re already comfortable with. If color helps you, then go for it!
  4. For any test that requires memorizing dates, terms, locations or vocabulary, Quizlet is hands-down the best app. Simply download the free app from the App Store and create your own set of flashcards or download a set that one of your classmates has created. Then use the learn and match functions to memorize your words. If you need to learn pronunciation of a word for Spanish or Italian, the app will actually pronounce each word for you!
  5. Put your phone down. Or have your sibling, parent or friend hide it. At some point or another, we’ve all spent too long “checking” our phones.  You’ll be able to study better without distractions.
  6. To show that you’ve really learned something, teach it! Teach a friend or parent everything you know about a specific topic, then have them ask you questions. If you feel comfortable, you know that topic and can move on; if not, study up!
  7. While you may be familiar with the videos of Khan Academy, did you know that the practice problems can be helpful too? If it’s the night before a test and you’re still not confident on a topic, try doing a few. The site grades them for you, which is really useful.
  8. While Sparknotes and Shmoop are no replacement for actually reading the book, they’re very useful when preparing for an English test. Before taking a test about the book, do a quick Google search for quizzes. Take a look at some of the practice quizzes that come up, as they will show you which chapters to reread before your next exam. Reading the plot summaries and notes about the book is a great way to review too.
  9. When you feel completely comfortable with all the topics on your study guide and sleep is calling you, get ready for bed. Then reread your textbook or go over those few vocabulary terms you haven’t quite remembered. When you’ve had enough, put your books away, turn off your lights and go to sleep. You’re more likely to remember things if you review them before you sleep, and it’s important to be well-rested before the test.
  10. Finally, it’s important to look over your answers even when you think you’re done and right. When your teacher hands back your test, look over it to see what questions you got wrong. Maybe you need to review grammar a little bit more, but you aced vocabulary. This information will be super helpful when Finals roll around.