15 Ways to Become a Better Student
How Do You Become a Better Student?
Are you struggling in your subjects at school or you’re not getting the results you want?
If that sounds like you don't panic. It doesn't mean you're not smart or that you can't improve your results.
What it means is that your study habits, mindset, and self-image aren’t in alignment with the habits and mindset of an outstanding student.
If you practice the right strategies you can become a better student. This article will show you how.
By reading it and applying what you learn you’ll be able to identify your weak spots and have an easy to follow system for how to reach the top of your class.
Of course, the only person that can make you a better student is you.
You can read all the best information on how to do something, but unless you take action and implement it for yourself you won’t get the results you want.
You can easily increase your results as a student by applying these strategies if you have a strong enough desire and you're willing to put in some effort.
First, let’s answer a few important questions;
What is an Ideal Student?
An ideal student is one who achieves a high level of understanding in a subject, as reflected in their academic results.
This can be manifested in many ways, through many personalities. Students have different study strategies.
Some start and complete assignments weeks in advance, while others submit them on the final day.
If the assignments are of high quality, does it matter? No.
What matters is the student is using a strategy that matches their personality and the way their mind works.
Let’s take a quick look at some qualities of the best students...
What Traits Do the Best Students Have?
1. They're Studious
Good students are studious, which means they commit serious time to their studies.
That means reading notes, working on assignments, research, revising past work, or writing notes from textbooks to gain a better understanding of a topic.
2. They Focus
Success in any area requires continued focus. Being a good student is no different.
If you’re studying and you’re checking your phone or your Facebook feed every few minutes, how do you expect your brain to be able to absorb the information you’re trying to learn.
The best students block out distractions and focus solely on the task at hand.
3. They Use Self Discipline
The best students take a disciplined approach to their studies.
Being disciplined in your studies means that even when you don’t feel like studying but you know you should, you do it anyway.
Discipline leads to consistency. These students don’t study sporadically, they have a consistent plan and they stick to it.
4. They Value Education
Good students value achievement. They know the only way to get good results is to put in the work.
Also, they appreciate the value of education and the doors of opportunity that are open to someone with an educated mind and the ability to use it.
Their values are reflected in their results.
5. They Attempt to Understand Not Just Memorize
Exceptional students don’t just memorize data to scrape by on the next exam. They seek to understand the content.
There’s a difference. True understanding is to comprehend the information on a deeper level than just “knowing it”.
An indication of your level of understanding is your ability to articulate and clearly explain the topic.
6. They Put in the Work
Success takes effort. Being an outstanding student is no different. The best students put in the work. There’s no other way.
They don’t slack off or look for shortcuts or freeload off the hard work of other students.
They sit down and do the work.
15 Ways to Be a Better Student
1. Study What Interests You
Study something you have a genuine interest for, otherwise, you’ll never be as good as you could be.
Investing your time doing things you want to do sounds obvious, yet not everyone lives that way.
When you’re interested in what you’re learning you don’t get bored or lose motivation, and your results will always be better.
2. Have a Positive Attitude Towards Learning
Having the right attitude to your studies will make it a lot easier for you.
One of the primary benefits of study is it teaches you to work under pressure ( multiple assignments due at the same time), and effective communication (presentations, group assignments, and writing essays).
These skills are critical for success in the real world.
Being open and willing to participate will help you get the most from your studies.
3. Set Your Outcome
Having clearly defined outcomes going in will give you a far superior result than if you go in blind.
When I started my business degree I had a clearly defined expectation to use what I learn to become a better business guy and investor, both of which I accomplished.
I wasn't there to fluff around. I had clear intentions and expectations.
4. Choose the Right Peer Group
Who you spend your time with at school can make all the difference to your final results.
If you’re spending time around students who don’t take their study seriously and spend their time partying your results won't be good.
Get around smart people with good study habits and high expectations for themselves in their studies.
Learn from each other and help each other out when you study.
5. Be Organized
Half of the success at school is being organized and managing your time. Have your lecture slides printed before the lecture.
Organize each week's content for a subject in a folder so you can access it easily when it’s time to study for your finals.
Plan out your assignments in stages ie. research, draft, edit, final touches.
6. Read Ahead
Read ahead. You don't have to know every detail but get an idea of what content you’ll be covering in the weeks ahead for your topic.
Familiarise yourself with project due dates at the beginning of the semester and put them in a place you’ll see them every day.
7. Show up and Participate
Don’t think it won’t matter if you don't show up for a lecture.
Reading notes at home and being in a live lecture isn’t the same thing. You should be doing both.
Part of the university experience is the participation aspect. Get involved with the subject you're learning.
Most universities and schools offer an abundance of resources for students so make sure you use them all.
8. Ask Questions
Don’t ever hesitate to ask a question in class. That’s why you’re there, to gain understanding and clarity on a topic.
A lot of students hesitate to ask a question in the class for fear of embarrassment.
There's no need to feel like that, any question you ask at least half the class was thinking the same thing.
Asking intelligent questions and seeking further clarification is a sign of a higher level of aptitude on your part.
9. Read Different Sources on the Same Topic
To gain a thorough understanding of a topic, read different sources and perspectives.
Particularly when you have an assignment or an essay, use a variety of sources to form a balanced opinion of what you’ll be writing about.
You don’t want one-dimensional thinking, you want to be able to see a topic from different angles before you form your own opinion and views.
10. Use Spaced Repetition for Deeper Learning
Don’t read or review your work once and forget about it. Revise it regularly with some time in between.
That way your brain has time to absorb and make sense of the information and relate it to various concepts you already know, as well as new concepts you’re learning now.
11. Take Notes
Pay attention in class. Don’t check your phone, don’t chat with your friends, don’t think about your plans for the weekend.
When you’re in class listen and take notes. You’re there to learn.
Take a professional approach. Your job is to be an exceptional student.
12. Don't Procrastinate
You do what you know you have to do. You might not feel like doing it, but that doesn’t matter if you do it anyway.
Your longer-term goals and objectives take priority over your short term emotions.
Don’t procrastinate and delay. That only makes the task harder and less enjoyable.
You know you have to do it, get busy. Once you start your motivation lifts and you’re in the zone.
13. See the Bigger Picture
In times of stress (which is inevitable at times when you study) remember the bigger picture.
Why are you there? How will the knowledge you’re learning now give you the future you want tomorrow?
What’s the ultimate purpose you want to fulfill as a result of being where you are?
Never lose sight of the end goal. Make it so a day will come where you look back and say “it was all worth it”.
14. Be Grateful for the Opportunity
It’s easy to take what you have for granted.
But remember there are people all over the world who don’t have the opportunity to become educated.
Education opens doors in life that can lead you to great success.
Many people will never have that opportunity. Be grateful for where you are and make the most of it while you’re there.
15. Commit to Being Your Best
When all is said and done it’s you against yourself. Commit you’ll do your absolute best.
There’s a saying in martial arts “train hard the fight is easy, train easy the fight is hard”. The same idea applies to your studies.
If you follow the outline of the strategies in this post you’ll be well prepared when the time comes for an exam or submission of an important assignment.
Don’t wait for the last minute and overwhelm yourself. Be organized from the beginning. Study intelligently.
Be clear about what you’re trying to accomplish and put in the work. Above all else, have a winners attitude.
Your study and your education are important, but don’t let it define you.
If you don’t get the result you want don’t cry about it. Learn where you went wrong and double down, so the next time you’ll crush it!
Now it’s up to you to take what you’ve learned and put it into action.
Quotes About How to Be a Better Student
“Successful and unsuccessful people do not vary greatly in their abilities. They vary in their desires to reach their potential.” – John Maxwell
“Strive for progress, not perfection.” – Joe Rogan
“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.” – Beverly Sills“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” – Thomas A. Edison