Certainly, everyone beginning a new career or even taking a new class wants to be successful. And the first step in your success is truly understanding the material being taught in class.
As a student, you will have to attend classes but also engage in some independent study to commit vocabulary and concepts to memory.
Following is some advice to help you make the MOST of your study time.
Make your study time effective:
- Make a study schedule and stick to it. Enlist the help of family or friends, if necessary, to give yourself the time you need to study each day (daytime course) or week (evening course).
- Study small portions of information (example: vocabulary words or class notes from ONE chapter) for short periods of time (20- 30 minutes max). Take a 5 or 10-minute break and then resume studying.
- Have a designated study area where you don’t do anything else except study. Get rid of all distractions that take your attention away from studying.
- Find the right time of day for you to study. Are you most alert in the morning, afternoon or evening?
Make your study time active:
- Don’t just read and reread. Engage your senses. Read aloud. Write down definitions and key concepts.
- Notecards and flashcards can be very helpful. At the end of each chapter in your book there is a Key Terms Review with all the vocabulary words from that particular chapter.
- Drawing diagrams or visuals can help in committing key words, concepts and important dates to memory.
- Pause and reflect – relate the topic to personal experience or a story one of the instructors has shared. You may also reflect on how you will use the information you are learning as a real estate professional. Another good way to review information from class is to explain the material to someone else in your own words. Teaching is a great way to make sure you truly understand the material.
- Use the practice questions at the end of each chapter to test your knowledge of the material. Do not look up each answer as you go. Take the entire end of chapter test without looking at the answers in the back of the book, then grade yourself and calculate your score. When you get a question wrong, look it up in the chapter and make sure you understand WHY you got it wrong.
- Know the difference between facts and concepts. Facts must be memorized. Mnemonic devices can help – create acronyms or silly songs to help jog your memory.
- Concepts must be understood. Concepts are the glue that hold everything together. Attending class regularly and putting your cell phone away will ensure you understand the key concepts.
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