With tiring schedules, tons of work and handling two jobs, studying for quizzes and exams is a daunting task dreaded by many. Locking yourself in a room and cramming study material till you can remember everything may become counter-intuitive for you. So what’s the secret to effective learning?

Here are five awesome tried and tested study hacks you can use to sail through college with top grades.

Switch Your Study Space

Although some students swear by the library, cognitive scientists think differently. According to a New York Times article, alternating study spaces actually boosts memory and helps in retaining information.

It is interesting to note that memory is location and switching study places can significantly increase the likelihood of recalling what you’ve memorized. Sounds fun, doesn’t it? Just make sure you choose a quiet spot where you won’t get distracted so easily and you’re all set to ace your quiz.

Study Groups Can Work Wonders

Yes, you heard that right. Never underestimate the power of studying with your peers. Being part of a study group not only makes learning fun but also helps ease the workload when solving complex problems or reading assignments. Dividing and conquering is the best strategy to complete assignments on time without too much pressure.

You also get the benefit of sharing and exchanging study notes with your peers and learning new things you wouldn’t have learned otherwise. On a lighter note, you might make a new friend!

Flash Cards Make a Comeback

Old but definitely gold, flash cards are here to stay. It is scientifically proven that writing notes and definitions in bullet points makes memorizing easier by using mnemonic devices and associative phrases. The information that you write is imprinted in your memory and significantly increases recall.

Love-Hate Relationship with Quizzes

I know we all loathe taking quizzes but it’s actually good for you! While you may not be pushed to study any time during the semester, a scheduled quiz motivates you to study for it in order to get good grades. It is proven that formal evaluations not only affirm knowledge but enhance it. The most effective way to prepare for a quiz is to break down the curriculum into smaller chunks and read the study material daily.

A Sleepy Mind is a Tired Mind

Not getting enough sleep during the weekdays is understandable but it’s not okay. Insufficient sleep and disruptive sleeping patterns have a negative impact on your cognitive abilities, making you more frustrated and depressed when you cannot learn the given study material. If you have to prepare for a quiz or brave through finals week, get a full 8 hours of sleep and watch your GPA rise.

In college, working hard is not enough. You have to work smart and prioritize your time to get things done at the right time. I know it sounds easy but making practical changes is actually quite tough. I don’t believe in giving preach advice and so, I hope these smart, easily implementable hacks will lessen your study workload and help you become a sharp learner. Don’t forget to leave your thoughts below!