How do you study, /sci/? I,
1.Write all of the definitions in a chapter.
2.Write a checklist of what I'm going to do that study session
3.Skim the chapter quickly and then try to condense it into three or four pages.
4.Finally, once I think I know the material well enough, I do the questions in the book and some exam questions.
Is there anything you do that you think is better than that?
How do you study?
Depends on what I'm studying.
If it's physics, I'll just manipulate the equations in a million ways. It's kind of like playing with silly putty; you can mush it around into a bunch of different shapes.
Sometimes I try to introduce different types of movement into the equations to observe what happens.
If it's math, this approach doesn't work as well for studying, since situations vary much more widely. What I'll do is read ahead and try to work out a few problems on my own before the next day in class, and have questions for the professor relating to the current lesson. Helps keep me active in class discussions.
Any other class, I don't study, just do HW and pass the tests and focus on the important classes.
Depends on my mood:
Re-viewing the notes I try to really understand every step (maths, so mostly proofs) to know why and how, to get a major understanding.
For a LOT of proofs, I have to sketch something and try and fool around until it clicks; sometimes for multiple days (ofc only 30-90 minutes a day with pauses, I am not very creative, so if I am stuck, I am STUCK for real amd have to get my mind off that problem for a while).
Since I am a lazy procrastinating student, when if comes to homework (blablabla real geniuses don't need to exercises, well I do), I try to solve them first, without viewing the notes. If I am stuck, I try to work with the lecture notes in a neat matter (form notations etc).
Make it a habit. I needed fucking 22 years to realize that, but a simple learning schedule, like the girls at school had and everybody laughed about is THE FUCKING SHIT.
After some days or weeks it just feels awkward NOT to learn, just luke not brushing the teeth before going to bed or similar rituals.
Also try around which learning "style" is for you; maybe short but extremly intensive perods with a lot of breaks? Or are oyu the kind of person who is instantly soaked up into the matter and can learn 3h streight?
inb4 popsci; I like intensive and lots of breaks (no tv, 4chan, chat, but go around drink something in another room, move a little and return)
Do what Feynman did:
1. Divide the subject matter into discrete units or ideas (usually this is done for you in textbooks, lecture notes etc).
2. Write an explanation for the idea/concept, but as write it as if you were explaining it to a five year old. (This means no technical jargon, complex formula or anything else a five year old wouldn't know).
3. If you find that you can't explain something, it means there is a gap in your understanding, go back to the reference (textbook/lecture) and fix those gaps
4. If you need to remember the concept long-term (you almost always do), create an analogy. The more distant the analogy to the subject, the more likely you will remember it. (e.g using chess to understand the properties of markov chians)
I did it for my Bayesian Stat class and I actually understand basic stat for the first time in my life. Its very effective and you immediately know whether you understand something or not.
Different guy, but I don't organize, I just write until I've had enough. These are the various notes I've taken for this exam sessions (over 2/3 weeks)
Nah of course not lol (although I may have worked on the same thing on different occasions). There is a whole lot of stuff (either notes from books, lecture notes, attempts at problem sets, doodles, etc.)
These last few weeks I basically sat at my desk, took a bunch of sheets and started working on whatever I felt like doing for hours.
I'll try to keep this pace next semester (this time, the pressure of the exams helped but I might not have had to do so much if I had worked regularly)
What if it's the opposite, though? Like, as in you can explain it in simple terms but not complex terms.
I often find that I know what something is, but can't explain it in a scientific way and therefore lose marks.
Make everything colorful and emotionally impactful, and don't stress, and you will memorize everything you read without effort.
Reading shit over and over is incredibly inefficient.
Go watch some ted vids on memory.
I start with copying the important parts, then rewriting it. For formulae I find it helps to visualise exactly what wvery component is referring to.
I aim to understand a concept well enough that I could explain it to someone with 0 understanding of the subject.
I then think of ways to actually explain it to this imaginary person. Usually I write this down or have a conversation with myself. Or both.
For the really important stuff I get a friend who's not in studies to listen to my bullshit for a while and ask questions about it till he understands it too.
Teaching is learning, and it shows the gaps in your knowledge very quickly.
Not op but I'm really liking these two methods
I'm going to give these a try now, I'm really ecstatic about it
I've "explained" things to myself before and found that it works great
the only thing that sucks is I cant do it on the fly at my college since people around me would think i'm a crazy, haha
either way thank you
problems, problems, and more problems
if there's something i don't understand, i consult the textbook/internet/etc.
if there's something really complicated i don't understand, i ask my professor
First I jump right into the problems. If I get stuck, i back track and try to fill in the gaps.
Before a test I will:
1) write down what I need to know
2) write down definitions, proves, interesting examples
3) condense, condense, condense
4) practice writing down from memory the above
This may only be a problem of language, that is, you simply don't know the necessary jargon. Now depending on the subject this sort of ignorance is either negligible or totally crippling. In mathematics and physics, in its purest form, its negligible (unless you're trying to publish/read publications). In biology, its virtually a physical handicap.
However if you can explain it in simple terms, it means you understand it deeply. All that's left then, is to memorize the necessary technical lingo. Easiest way to do that is to use whatever methods you'd use to learn vocabulary. Flash cards, reading science journals etc.
The other issue may be that you aren't thinking scientifically enough. This is another matter entirely (and not, I suspect, the one causing you this problem). I recommend reading something on proving mathematical statements and basic logic (seriously, everyone, please learn some basic logic, its very useful for breaking down arguments and separating the wheat from the chaff), this will ground you in some level of certainty and if nothing else, allow you to explain things in a logical, straight-forward manner.
I also recommend reading "Structure of Scientific Revolutions" by Kuhn. This will bring you back to uncertainty, whose embrace the surest way to innovation and progress. Man never learned anything new by sticking with what he already knows.
This is a really good way to learn most things.
The technical bits of a subject are easy to fill back in yourself if you build very strong intuition. You (usually) don't need to memorize cumbersome proofs or long, complex methods if you conceptually grasp what's happening and why.
I don't really like analogies though, because they're necessarily imperfect and you can trip over that, especially if you have to build on that knowledge later and find your analogy no longer works.
The analogies are only a mnemonic device to keep the central concepts ingrained in your mind. They are not a substitute for the explanation you make in step 1. I was initially hesitant about this too, but then I realized if I could remember the analogy (and usually you can) I could piece back together the original explanation without needing to reference anything.