Life hacks to help you get ahead of your studies

Sam McGouganon 22 May 2020
Life hacks to help you get ahead of your studies

Get ahead while staying at home! We’re going to share some helpful hacks for your coursework during lockdown.

If your time management skills could use a bit of refining, this first hack should be a big help.

The Pomodoro Technique

Everybody has experienced burnout when studying, especially during the longer sessions. But, there’s a useful way around it; it’s called the Pomodoro technique.

It works on a work-break system, where you work for a short period (25 minutes is the widely-accepted standard), before giving yourself a 5-minute break.

After completing a set of four mini-breaks, you give yourself a 30-minute break for the fifth.

You’ll find that you get much more done using this technique and barely ever burn out. If you think you might have trouble keeping track of intervals, then use the Focus Keeper app, which is available on iOS and Android. It will keep track of the timing for you so that you can focus on the study itself.

This next hack is for those late-night studiers, who’ve left it to the last minute (again).

Disclaimer: It’s always better to revise ahead of time, but this technique is a perfect get out of jail free card for when you haven’t had the chance to prepare.

Speed reading: the best way to cram knowledge

We all know that one person who’ll stay up the night before an exam and devour the contents of their textbooks, before acing their test the next day.

Here’s the secret: speed reading. There are various ways to speed read, but we’ve chosen the one that is regarded as the most effective for textbooks and factual material. 

This is how to speed read:

Skip the first and last few words of each line while reading. You’ll notice that your peripheral vision still processes the words you don’t read.

Speed reading does take practise, but once you’ve cracked it, you’ll become a far more efficient reader. Loads of academics use this method, so you’ll be in esteemed company when you’ve mastered it.

And last but by no means least, we have the ultimate hack for a speedy study break:

The “Napuccino”

Naps are one of the most underrated tools for helping you to stay motivated and focused. Super-billionaires, Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates both saying that sleep is the most important thing to them when working on a major project. But, that’s not to say they spend all of their time snoozing… If only becoming a billionaire was that easy!

At this point, you’re probably wondering what on earth a nappucino is. Before we elaborate, there are two important things you should know about napping:

  1. Numerous studies have shown that most people's energy levels drop significantly at roughly 3 PM, so taking a nap then will greatly reduce the impact of any mid-afternoon sluggishness.
  2. The ideal time spent napping is 20 minutes, as it is just about short enough to ensure that your body doesn’t begin to enter a sleep cycle, which can make you feel groggy when you wake up.

Now you’re an expert on the science of napping, let’s talk about the nappucino itself.

The average time it takes for the caffeine from a cup of coffee to take hold on the body is 30 minutes. So, by drinking a cup of coffee and then taking a 20-minute nap, you will wake up feeling refreshed and primed to hit the books, just as the caffeine starts to take effect.

With these tips, you’ll be a study guru within no time. Just make sure you don’t miss too many of those lectures!

If you have any study hacks that you think we should know about, please let us know by joining the Student Hut Panel. We’re always looking for new faces to join our community and you’ll get a £10 Amazon voucher just for signing up!

Sam McGouganon 22 May 2020