College Student Study Tips

Student. A student’s success in college is dependent on a number of important factors that must be learned and put into use on a routine basis. Time management, good study habits, note taking, and the ability to properly prepare for and take tests are crucial to the learning process and are often the key for even the most successful of students. Time management and good study habits will help students to be more organized, reduce procrastination and increase productivity. Students with good studying habits are more focused and know how and when to study for the best results. To get the most out of studying a student must first understand how to take accurate notes during lectures or while conducting research. Even when the previous factors have been met, students must also know how to prepare for and take tests.

Knowing how to effectively perform research, hone one’s writing skills and prepare presentations are other skills that must also be mastered in order for students to obtain their desired degree. Each of these skills will make them a better student and improve the quality of their assignments. In addition, as important as these factors are while in college, some may even prove equally as important after graduation in terms of one’s professional career. Unfortunately, these skills do not always come naturally to every student and for them learning can be more difficult. For these students, studying skills can be learned with the right guidance and advice.

Time Management

  • Time Management for College Students: A PDF that gives college students tips to help avoid procrastination and develop good time management skills. Includes a section on getting organized and creating a plan. At the end of the PDF there is a procrastination quiz.
  • Time Management: A PDF from the Center for Teaching and Learning at Stanford University. The page gives students ten tips on developing good time management skills.
  • Time Management for Right Brained People: A two paged PDF that provides time management guidance for people who are predominately use their right brain.
  • Effective Time Management: A PDF from Duke University that explains the importance and advantages of good time management. It also provides students with directions on how to get started.
  • Time Management for College Students: Suggestions on how college students can properly manage their time.
  • Time Management for Students: An article on time management that recommends weekly task lists and calendars.

Note Taking

  • College Success Tip: Note Taking: Defines note taking and provides tips on note taking and methods.
  • Listen Actively and Take Great Notes: Discusses how to listen in class and take the best notes. Explains the Cornell method of note taking. Also discusses filling in notes immediately following the lecture.
  • Lecture Note Taking: Summarizes how to take notes and gives helpful tips. Also includes how to recognize signal words that can help with note taking.
  • Note Taking Skills: Provides tips on note taking skills that students can use. Begins with a yes or no quiz to help students evaluate their current note taking abilities.
  • Hints for Good Note Taking: Outlines ten basic steps to good note taking and tips on taking useful notes.
  • Note Taking Techniques: Includes general tips and tricks for note taking. Also explains what should be included when taking notes and why notes are necessary.

Study Habits

  • Developing Effective Study Habits: A PDF from the University of Maryland that discusses study preferences, when to study, how to study, and organizing to study. It also discusses joining a study group and using memorization tricks.
  • Developing Good Study Habits Really Works: A Psychology Today report on the benefits of good study habits. Gives some advice on how to develop these good habits.
  • Developing College Study Skills: A page from the Western Nevada College website. Reviews what is necessary to develop good study skills, such as successful behavior, thinking, listening and reading.
  • Developing Good Study Skills is More Than Hitting the Books: An article that discusses good study habits, when they are developed and the importance of developing. Mentions several useful study skills and habits that may be developed.
  • How to Concentrate on Studying: A one page PDF that lists seven steps for studying. The PDF is from the College of Coastal Georgia and is an assignment for tutors.
  • Assessing Your Study Habits: Clayton State University general guidelines for studying. This page also includes a link to online inventories on studying.

Writing Skills

  • Four Ways to Improve Your Writing Skills: A PDF from St. Joseph’s College that charts four ways that students can improve their writing. Each step includes clear examples.
  • Tips to Improve Your Writing Skills: The Art Institute of Pittsburgh provides useful tips on improving student writing skills. Four tips in bulleted format are given.
  • Writing Skills: A PDF that provides guidance regarding writing skills. It includes topics such as six ways to boost writing skills, writing tips, and five steps for essay writing.
  • Writing Tips: Five tips for improving writing in terms of academic writing.
  • Purdue Owl: An online resource that helps student and other writers work through grammar and punctuations tips and advice.



  • Test Taking Strategies: Consists of three sections that outline strategies for taking tests. Sections include before the test, during and after the test.
  • Survival Strategies for Taking Tests: Strategies are broken into two sections about test taking. The first section is a brief discussion about before the testing. The second section includes strategies for the actual test.
  • Test Taking Tips: Eight Spelman College test taking tips listed in numbered format.
  • Test Taking Strategies and Suggestions: Reviews several aspects of test taking, such reducing anxiety, visualization and six types of common errors that people make when taking their tests.
  • Math and Science Test Taking Tips: A checklist of tips that are meant specifically for taking tests that are math and science related.
  • Managing Test Anxiety: Tips for students on how they can manage anxiety over testing. Includes effective study habits, memorizing content and other test taking strategies.

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