Introduction to Good Study Guide GST107


Welcome to The Good Study Guide !This is an article of advice, tips and practical exercises to help you develop your study skills and get the most you can from your studies: better results, a greater sense of personal achievement and more enjoyment.

Who this articles is for?

If you are starting out on higher level studies, or part way through a degree and looking to boost your performance, this article is for you.

It will be equally helpful whether you are studying:

full time, or part time

on campus, or by distance learning

having recently left school, or after along break away from study.

It will be particularly helpful if you are studying the kind of course that involves a good deal of reading and essay writing. But do you need a study skills book at all?

Should you read this article?

Do any of the following thoughts hover in your mind? Tick any boxes that apply

  1. Withso much to study already, I doubt I can spare the time for article like this.

  2. I’mnot sure Indeed to bother about study skills. I’ve come through years of schooling. Why start now?

  3. Ialready have my own ways of studying and I don’t particularly enjoy being told what to do. 4Ithink Indeed a few hints and tips, not a whole article.

  4. I find it easier to get advice from people than from articles.

1. Idoubt Ican sparethe time for abook like this …

A fair point. It is a chunky article and there always seems to be more to study than you have time for.

But you will certainly waste a lot of time if you don’t study effectively. Reading this book will actually save time, by helping you make better use of it. You don’t need to drop everything right now and read the article from cover to cover. Skills take time to develop. Just set yourself to read achapter every three or four weeks, squeezed in amongst your other studies.


2. I’ am not sure I need to bother about study skills …

Perhaps you think study skills are for beginners, but studying never becomes easy. There are always new challenges and your skills can always be improved. Successful students recognise the importance of continuing to develop and refine their skills.

3. Ialready have my own ways of studying …

Agood thought. It is right to feel ownership of your ways of doing things. Your study techniques express who you are. Be proud of them. Be confident. But don’t commit yourself to remaining forever locked into the same ways of doing things. Tryout and take ownership of new approaches. This article will not tell you what to do. It will help you to review what you already do and weigh up alternative strategies. You will remain in control.

4. I think I need a few hints and tips, not a whole article

Hints and tips are very helpful, and there are plenty in this article, but they are not enough. If you really want to get ahead through your studies you need insight into the way your mind learns, together with flexible strategies for getting the most from all kinds of learning opportunities. To achieve this you need to invest small chunks of ‘quality time over a fairly long period. You will not understand your own learning overnight. That is where this article will help. It offers exercises and discussion within a coherent overall approach to thinking about study. The exercises will help you work out ways of meeting immediate challenges, but the understanding you develop will help you take control of your learning throughout your life.

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5. I find it easier to get advice from people than from articles

Advice from teachers and other students is excellent for building up your confidence and giving you new ideas to try out, but studying at a higher level is often a solitary activity. Working on your own with study skills article helps build up your capacity for this independent learning.

Key points

Why read this article?

It will help you make better use of your study time.

It offers much more than handy hints and tips; it will help you to understand how you learnand build up your capacity for independent study.

Whether you are an experienced student or abeginner,this book will build on your existing skills and insights.

How this article works

  1. considers studying as a whole and how to think your way into it.

  2. then focuses on how to develop your skills in specific study tasks.

Studying intelligently

To be asuccessful student you must use your intelligence. You must approach studying strategically and systematically.

  1. recognising the value of investing significant time and effort in developing your study skills.

  2. Taking control of your studies’ then discusses how to get yourself organised so that you can manage your studies effectively.

  3. Using acomputer to study’ outlines different ways to enhance your studies through the use of a computer.

Finally, ‘Understanding how you learn’ explores the nature of learning at university level, to help you better understand what it is you are trying to achieve when you study.

The essential skills

Courses in many subject areas involve a lot of reading and essay writing. Explores the essential skills needed to study successfully in such subjects.

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These skills include:

Reading articles and books

Making notes to help you understand and remember Listening to talks and lectures

Talking in seminars and workshops

Working with numbers and charts

Finding information on the internet

Writing essays

Preparing for exams.

Ways of using the good study guide article

This is not an article to read from cover to cover in a single sweep. Yo should dip into it and select what you need. Begin it now, but keep coming back as your studies continue. The article is designed to be used in a variety of ways:

If you want to work seriously on developing skills in a particular study area, then set aside an hour or two to work carefully through a chapter doing all the activities in full.

If you want to review a particular skill area (say, note taking or preparing an essay) skim through the relevant chapter to get a general overview from the headings and pick up ideas from the boxes and key points lists.

If you need advice on a specific point, such as avoiding plagiarism, or preparing slides for a presentation, look it up in the index and read just paragraph or two. This book is intended to be easy to use whichever way you choose, with detailed contents list at the beginning, a comprehensive index at the end, and topic boxes and key points lists throughout.

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