As we all enter into college, or have been here for a couple semesters, studying still stands as something that can constantly be improved upon. Heading into every single quiz, exam, or project it is always impertinent that you study before hand to be as prepared as possible. However, what is the best way to study? Do I go sit in the deep gallows of the stacks, completely isolated, or do I gather with a few of my friends who are also studying?
Studying alone can also have many different parameters, from being completely isolated from all civilization in the stacks, to simply being a table by yourself with your headphones in. This strategy absolutely comes with different advantages and disadvantages.
Advantages to studying alone are that it minimizes distraction, allows you to pace yourself, and can improve your focus. When you are by yourself, distraction is minimized due to the lack of other interaction you have other than with your schoolwork. You can take breaks whenever you feel overwhelmed, or even read at a speed that suits you. This pacing of your own work can be extremely beneficial to you, for no one knows you better than yourself. Lastly, the improvement of focus that comes with studying alone is crucial. This lets you have the flexibility to learn different sections that you personally need improvement on as well as leave less stress on aspects you may have already mastered (Getcollegecredit.com).
Disadvantages to studying alone is not having your peers and friends around you to push you to study if you become off task. Even the best of studiers can sometimes become off task for hours without even realizing it. Having that group around you will allow you to push to maximize the time you spend studying (blog.bookrenter.com).
When you study in a group of people, like studying alone, will come with advantages and disadvantages. Group studying typically involves anywhere from one to four other people that will studying either the same, or different, material that you are. Some advantages to this study technique are it can increase retention, expand access to information, and boost motivation to study. This increased retention will come from the ability to vocalize ideas you may have to someone else, a technique that is proven to allow you to remember information better. Along with this will come the knowledge not just that you have, but the knowledge from everyone else around the table. The biggest advantage will come from the increased motivation that comes from a group study. Having others around you that are also studying, will prevent distraction and allow you to maximize this study effort (Getcollegecredit.com).
Disadvantage that accompany studying in a group is that you can only be as productive as the group’s weakest link. This means that if there is one person that is extremely distracted, too loud, or constantly being outlandish it can be detrimental to the group as a whole. If that one person is off, every single member of the group can suffer for his or her actions (classroom.synonym.com).
I think that one way in which this could be decided is through a study. This study could gather random people that are separated into random group. Then each group will either study individually or within a group, and given an exam to see who scores better. Obviously there will be a large amount of confounding variables such as previous intelligence and an individual’s habits. This is just an idea that could be purposed in order to determine which study method yields better school performance.
Every single person studies and performs in different ways, whether that be with a group of friends or independently. Studying is no different. In order to succeed you must try each option and stick to what works. Personally, I enjoy studying with groups because I feel less stress and feel like they keep me on task more often. When I am studying alone I can sometimes catch myself an hour into random videos on YouTube. Each method has several different advantages and disadvantages, it is up to you to decide which method will yield the best results.