*A collaborative post
Pursuing further education as an adult is a fantastic way to boost your prospects and grow your career. But when it’s been a while since you’ve been in a learning environment, it can be hard to get back into the swing of things.
If you’re used to nagging your kids to do their homework, you might soon find some sympathy for them when you realise how hard it is to get work done. It’s going to take a bit of perseverance and motivation, but it’s worth putting the effort in to be able to enjoy the results of your hard work.
A quick lesson in how to study can help you rediscover the skills you need to work hard at your studies for the sake of your career. Take a look at the following study tips and become the studious student once more!
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Try not to bite off more than you can chew
When choosing a form of study, it’s worth looking at all of the available options to help you find one that you’re comfortable with. You can choose from short courses, distance learning or postgraduate degrees that could all help to enhance your skills or help you progress in your career.
When looking at courses to benefit your work, you should research the different options carefully. Undertaking a healthcare management associates degree is something that could benefit you if you work in the health industry or you want to pursue a different career path. You could also consider management courses or a qualification in marketing or communications if you were looking at other ways to enhance your career.
Ease yourself back into studying
Returning to study after a long period of absence can be difficult. Instead of diving in head first, why not ease yourself back in through a taster course, or even undertaking some study on a subject you’re interested in? Take some time to read, especially academic works, and perhaps even try writing a bit too. When you’re ready to begin your real learning, you’ll already have better skill and discipline.
Create a schedule
Managing study while working, taking care of a family as well as living your life can be a challenge, but learning how to manage your time better can be a significant part of your success. Create a study schedule that helps you fit in your study hours around your other commitments, and try to stick to it. A few hours each week, particularly during the time when you’re the most productive, will help you to get everything you need done.
To be able to fit in your studies around everything else, you might have to make some sacrifices. These sacrifices will only be a minor inconvenience for a short time, but will be worth it to help you achieve your goals.
Make sure you’re prepared
The ‘back to school’ shopping trip is an exciting time for kids, helping them mentally prepare themselves for going back to school. Why not let it be for you too? Make sure you’ve got everything you need for successful study – you’ll be surprised at how easily you will have forgotten some of the basic things you need for studying. Get all of the necessary, stationery and books to help make your studying as stress-free as possible.
Designate a space for study
It’s almost impossible to study when you’re surrounded by chaos, so make sure that you designate a quite, distraction-free space to aid your studying. If you’re lucky enough to have a home office, take advantage of it, or set yourself up with a space somewhere else in your home. You could also consider a home office conversion, which is something that could benefit the whole family! Make sure you’re not disturbed by the rest of your household, and if you can’t get the peace and quiet that you need, why not head to the library or a local coffee shop instead?
Visual cues can help promote learning much easier than simply trying to recall words on a sheet. While it’s important to write everything down that about the topic you’re studying, you can then use this as the basis for creating some fantastic supplementary visuals such as charts and diagrams.
Breaking things down into smaller, more digestible bites through note cards can also help you remember a topic well, ready for essay and exam time.
Set yourself targets
Setting learning targets can be a fantastic way to give yourself the motivation you need to carry on with your studies. When you’re completing a remote degree for example, or a course that you can complete in your own time – it can be easy to procrastinate and put off the work that you need to do. Set yourself some clear targets on what you want to achieve to help you keep your eye on the prize and stay motivated throughout your studies.
Don’t overwork yourself
It’s easy to become stressed as a result of your studies, but it’s important that you take care of your mental health while learning. If you’re organised with your time, you can avoid many of the pitfalls that come with studying, and making sure that you’ve got enough time to get your work done. Remember to take regular breaks and reward yourself for a job well done. While you might be tempted to work all night to get something finished, you’ll probably feel better going to sleep and giving it a go first thing in the morning when your brain is refreshed.
If you do encounter stress or other issues while studying, raise them with your tutor as soon as possible. They’re there to help and support you and can provide you with some valuable advice as well as some leniency to help you complete your work without your health suffering in the process.
While returning to study can be difficult, the good news is that you’ll pick it up again quickly. Whether you’re studying for a purpose, as a hobby or as a way to keep your brain sharp, there are multiple benefits of studying at any age that will make it worthwhile. Settle into a studying routine that works for you, and you’ll be sure to pass with flying colours!