When it comes to studying in college, education experts have noted that group study is more effective than if a student is studying all by himself or herself. There is also the added bonus that it can also be pretty fun, especially since you will be hitting the books with classmates and friends.
Here are some very helpful tips on how you can organize your own study group.
The ideal number for a study group is between three to five people. This will enable everyone in the group to discuss the subject matter and ask questions until everything is clear. Don’t just limit your study group to your friends. Try asking your other classmates who have been getting good grades in the particular subject. He or she might be willing to help you and your friends get through the study material.
Experts advise that study group sessions should be limited to just a couple of hours three or four times a week. This will help you to cover more topics and discuss them thoroughly without having to cram them all into a single, tiring all-night cramming session.
Designate one individual to act as leader. He or she should be capable of ensuring that study group sessions will run at a smooth pace. The leader will keep each person in the group focused on the subject matter to minimize instances of social chatting.
Having a study group does not mean that you will attend a session unprepared. On the contrary, you need to study prior to a session. It is important for the others in the group to know how much you understand the subject material so that they could help you in points that you have trouble with. In the same vein, you should also be able to help the others in the group if there are certain topics which they don’t understand.
To facilitate the sharing of knowledge, write down any questions that you may have prior to your study group session. Bring all your notes and homework and compare your answers with the other members of the group.
If you are holding a group study for an exam, prepare questions that you will ask each other for a drill to remember important facts. For example, what are the layers of the skin? You can also ask your professor if he or she can give you some practice quizzes. It is not enough to just study for multiple choice or true or false questions. Always entertain the possibility that there might be an essay question or two in the exam. In these cases, make it a point to discuss “Why” and “How” questions. For example, “Why are some people more susceptible to skin cancer than others?” and “How does ultraviolet radiation cause skin cancer?” To better handle these questions, you can divide the questions among the members of the group and have each one discuss it during your next session.