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College Success Tip # 31 - Study Environments

Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established.”

Proverbs 16:3

College requires a lot of studying. Whether one wants to believe it or accept it, in order to advance in any academic program, studying is essential. In Higher Education students are expected to study to earn the desired grades to ultimately pass the course and studying for tests, quizzes, midterm exams and final exams is a norm.

Studying can be defined as one devoting time and attention to acquire knowledge on a particular subject matter. When one understands the importance of how studying contributes to Academic success it is to be taken seriously because it requires one to look closely at their intended targeted goals in order to observe, read and understand course subject matters.

Studying is essential but the foundation of studying depends largely on one’s STUDY ENVIRONMENT. Choosing a suitable environment to study in must be one that is “Distraction Free”. Distraction Free can be defined as being free of distractions – things that prevent the HigherEd student from focusing or giving their full attention to the intended educational target!

So what are some arrows of success as it relates to choosing a Study environment that is distraction free?

I’m glad you asked!!

Below are a few recommended tips for HigherEd students seeking to Study in Distraction Free Zones.

  • Choose An Academic Environment – Academic Environments such as the library, study rooms or areas on the college campus are great areas to study. Even an empty classroom is a great place to study but make sure that you aren’t violating any rules or policies. Also, when you choose an academic environment be mindful that anyone can come and sit on the side of you or around you because it is a public place. It is important to choose times that are conducive to your schedule for studying as well areas where you can maximize space so individuals get the point that this is “your area” and to not impede that space.

  • Choose a Quiet Environment – Every time a student has to study for something doesn’t mean they must study in an academic setting, but if one chooses to study at home, work or even in their car make sure that you are in an area that is comfortable where you have access to your study materials, with minimal distractions and can access essentials easily.

  • Studying with Children - For parents, guardians, caretakers or siblings who must watch children whilst working on their HigherEd degree it is important to get your study time but it’s not always when children are sleep or at school. A tip for individuals with children/siblings who have to study is to make it an all-inclusive effort. For toddlers, it is somewhat easy to create a distraction for them as you study a couple of feet away with their favorite television program with headphones on the TV or iPad and snacks, but for children who are in grade school this is a time for double duty. This time of studying for you can be the same study time for them, while you are studying, they are completing their own homework assignments, catching up on some summer reading books, their Sunday school lessons, Bible lessons or their math, reading and English drills. This is a time for you to get work done and even sow a seed for them to see the value of studying as you all make the investment of reaching higher academic targets which will yield a harvest later down the road.

  • Distraction Free Zone # 1 – Technology - When studying it is important to give up the # 1 Distraction in my book which is the Technology! With the varying forms of technology, one can get caught up on Social media, not realizing that 5 minutes turned into 3 and a half hours. Time that could have been devoted to personal development and progress. Turn off the Technology which includes all notifications from social media on your iPad, tablet, smart phone, computer, smart watch, etc. because those notifications distract students when they are in a study mode causing one to break focus.

  • Distraction Free Zone # 2 –Family and Friends – When studying aim to purposefully spend time away from family and friends. Put a timer on yourself, you don’t have to tell your friends that you are studying for 3 hours and not to call you during that time, simply call them back or check back with them after studying the following day when you are free. Although we can’t escape our family, family is important so when studying don’t completely cut off ties with family, due to emergencies You have to be in the know even when you are studying so a tip would be to let family know that you are studying so they will respect your time and decision and if an emergency comes up they know how to locate you and you will be in position to be reached and take action.

  • Distraction Free Zones # 3 – High Traffic Areas – Although studying at a local coffee shop is ideal because you have your favorite window seat and you are in the same area with your favorite teas, coffee, donuts, iced coffee with whip cream, cake pops, breakfast sandwiches, power bars, trail mix and scones (I'm distracted already by listing the food options) those areas produce a lot of traffic which often lead to a lot of distractions that come in the form of noises, people talking, orders being called out, smart phones & watches going off, TV's played, etc. With all that going on it is a challenge to keep one's mind focused on studying and not what is going on around them. Additionally, studying at your local bookstore is a great intellectual environment but might not be the best place for study because it is first and foremost a business establishment which produces a lot of traffic and distractions. When studying students must consider areas that don’t produce enough distractions on their own.

Continue to Aim Towards the Target,

Peace & God Bless,

Dr. Bryant

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