Quiz: Study Like an All-star

Staff

4 Min Quiz

What's the first step in improving reading comprehension?

Set the stage for reading comprehension by clearing your mind. Instead of mentally planning your Friday night festivities, really focus on the matter at hand. You'll absorb more information in a shorter time.

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What are the proven steps to promoting reading comprehension?

To learn -- and remember -- the passages you read, try this system to boost your comprehension: survey/question/read/recite/review. Survey the material to see how it's organized, ask questions as you read, divide the reading into small chunks and recite what you've learned after each section.

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What's the best way to highlight important information in your textbook?

Instead of underlining every interesting sentence, zero in only on information you really need. First, read the entire section (put that highlighter down while you do!) Then, reread the passage, highlighting the major points and making key word or summary notes in the margins.

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You have a math test in the morning. Should you stay up all night to cram for the exam?

Math is one subject that cramming for a test doesn't help. Instead, build a strong foundation by studying and practicing each day.

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You're in the middle of a test and the answer is on the tip of your tongue, but you can't remember it. What do you do next?

By obsessing over the almost-remembered answer, you'll actually be training your brain to fail to remember. Focus on the rest of your test and come back to the question at the end.

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If you need to commit proper names to memory, which name game works best?

Why are names so hard to remember? Because, unlike people you actually know, the names don't have images attached. You can change this by creating an image for each name. For example, a news anchor said she remembered Iranian President Ahmadinejad by picturing him in an armored dinner jacket.

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What is a memory palace?

A memory palace is a term for a memorization technique that relies on spatial memory. To create a memory palace, think of a place you know really well (like your home) and put all the things you want to remember along a path. Each stop on the path should have one specific image associated with it. The more elaborate the image, the better you'll remember it.

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The idea of a "memory palace" was first described by whom?

Building a "memory palace" was first recommended by Cicero, a Roman philosopher who died in 43 B.C. In 2005, Lu Chao used the technique to recite 67,890 digits of pi and become the Guinness World Record holder of "most Pi places memorized."

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What is an interchangeable term for memory palace?

Method-of-loci is the technique behind building a memory palace. It means "method of places" and is used to enhance memory.

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To retain what you study, make this simple change:

By simply alternating your study location (say one hour in your room, followed by an hour outside) you can boost your retention. That's because your brain forms multiple associations with the same material, connecting the paint color of one room or the view from another room with the material you are studying. These multiple associations create more neural connections.

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Is it more effective to build a study session around a single concept or multiple, related ideas?

Studying related concepts instead of homing in on a single idea leaves a deeper impression on the brain. It forces the brain to make connections between related ideas and strengthens the bonds between them.

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Will you get a better grade if you study the material over a period of weeks or cram it all in a day or two before the test?

Think of your brain as a suitcase. When its contents are packed carefully over time, they all seem to fit perfectly. Spreading out your study sessions forces your brain to relearn material, which makes it have more of a lasting impression.

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Why are tests and quizzes important to information recall?

When you take a test or a quiz, it changes the way you store pertinent information. Your brain adapts to the recent retrieval and makes the information easier to access in the future.

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How can music aid your math studies?

Memorizing math facts using music makes them easier to remember. When you use the steady rhythm and rhyming of song, it's easier to recall abstract information.

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How long should you study before taking a break?

Research shows short study sessions are best. We learn more, we retain more and we avoid study fatigue. The ideal length of time for a study session is less than an hour, but if you are trying to memorize your topic, stick to 20 or 30 minutes instead.

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Why are good study habits like dog training?

If you've ever taught a dog to sit, stay or roll over -- and then given him a treat -- you've witnessed the power of behavior modification. And it could work on you, too. After you study (particularly if it isn't your favorite subject), treat yourself. Hang out with a friend, watch TV or stalk your frenemies on Facebook.

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The comprehensive study technique known as SOAR, stands for:

SOAR is a study skills technique that complements the way the brain processes information. It begins by selecting key ideas and then organizing the information through comparison or illustration. Once this is complete, associate the ideas to create connections between them and then regulate the way you learn by practicing this method over and over.

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Research shows students who do this have higher GPAs than their peers:

Research shows students with the highest GPAs administer self tests on course materials, while students with lower GPAs don't. Self tests boost grades because these students make time to study long before exam time, giving their brains more time to store and retrieve essential information.

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If you want to remember material from a classroom lecture, what should you do?

You'll retain information better if you write it down -- and then rewrite it. This is especially true of classroom lecture notes. Transcribing them helps you connect the dots and makes concepts easier to remember.

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What is one crucial step to take <i>before</i> you study?

Before you begin to study, craft a plan with a clear-cut goal (read two chapters, complete three chemistry equations). This will help you stay focused, and you'll get satisfaction from completing the goal.

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All-stars are known for their prowess, be known for yours by daring to take this quiz.

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