6 weird study tricks that actually work

Most students think that locking themselves in a library for long uninterrupted study sessions is the key to performing well on exams. But it turns out doing so can actually hurt your grades. Who knew? Try these odd (yet proven!) study tricks instead:

1. Move around

6 weird study tricks that actually work

According to the New York Times, something as simple as switching the location in which you are studying can boost retention of material. This is a great excuse to head to a coffee shop and study there for a couple hours.

2. Study less

6 weird study tricks that actually work

The Pomodoro Technique, developed in the late 1980s by Francesco Cirillo involves working 25 minutes followed by taking a 3-5 minute break. Apparently this improves mental agility and makes you more productive. Who knew studying less could in fact help you do better on a test?


6 weird study tricks that actually work

Fish is a great study food. It was included in WebMD’s “Brain Foods that Help You Concentrate.” Rich in omega-3 fatty acids that are key for brain health, sushi can help your memory and even your long term health. A perfect excuse to go out for dinner!

4. Take a nap

6 weird study tricks that actually work

Naps are something we often feel guilty for. Turns out, a 90-minute catnap at around noon can increase your learning capacity later that day. Rest up!

5. Laugh!

6 weird study tricks that actually work

Studies show that laughter can have psychological benefits that help students learn—if the laughter is tied to what you are studying. Laughing boosts retention dramatically, so bonus points if you can make up a joke about your math homework!

6. Gummy bear incentive

6 weird study tricks that actually work

Okay, so this one isn’t backed by science, but it has to work, right?! What better way to make studying irresistible than systematically placed gummy bears?


9 thoughts on “6 weird study tricks that actually work

  • October 1, 2014 at 12:22 am

    Love your studying tips I thought I was the only one struggling with remembering what I have studied …study long study wrong. .Thumbs Up To This Site. …

  • August 27, 2014 at 8:21 am

    if studying less and taking a 90 min. nap at noon every day works , how come mexico doesn’t rule the world in intellectual astuteness !

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  • April 3, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    I graduated Summa Cum Laude by just being organized and having a good short-term memory. If one is organized (with the tips below), then one can prepapre and study well, and if one has a good short-term memory, one can remember any material in time to take a test. In the end, it isn’t how much we remember long term, so long as I know where to find the material – but even after practicing the above, one finds that one eventually will remember many things long term despite oneself. The following are the only study rules that always got ne A’s.
    1. Always use flash cards (a habit best begun in highschool or earlier). When it’s time to take a test, potion off that section of your notebook on which the test is based, then systematically go through all the notes with index cards, writing a question on one side and writing the answer or a list of answers on the other side. Note: just this act of writing cards is a study tool. Then, if I have say 40 cards and 8 days before the test, let’s say, then I memorize cards 1-5 on day 1, cards 6-10 on day 2 (while reviewing all the previous cards 1-5 again), 11-15 on day 3 (while reviewing cards 1-10 again), etc. This breaks up one’s study in sane quantities, allows one to schedule other study and “fun” activities in one’s day, too. Note: always use a weekly calendar palnner to schedule study times and fun times throughout the week – the burden of remembering when to study or worry you won’t have enouh time is psychologically lifted from your mind. Schedule time to write papers this way, too.
    2. Never cram all night and burn the midnight oil. I always stopped studying by 8:00 for the most part; I did’t want to miss my favorite TV shows. LOL Of course, with the cards that have been already studied, bring them along to the TV set and go through them during commercials – it’s just added reinforcement.

    That’s it. I graduated summa cum laude in college and got all A’s in graduate school. I even studied for my MA oral examinations this way, spending the summer walking along Lake Michigan on the bike path of Lake Shore Drive in Chicago – it would take me 2 to 3 hours to walk the length to go downtown. There I was a captive audience to my study cards. I did it every day for a month.

  • April 2, 2014 at 11:40 am

    I’ve been studying my whole life wrong. will try this techniques! Hope it could really help me!

    One thing I also do is eat a chewing gum while reviewing and eat the same flavor at exam day. ;3 It could help me refresh information if I remember the taste. Also, I use blue pen when studying on a blue room ambiance with a blue notebook. yeah. Everything blue coz color blue is relaxing and our mind registers the color blue more than any. 😉

  • March 20, 2014 at 7:17 pm

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  • March 19, 2014 at 6:48 am

    My son swears by chewing gum while studying–as long as you don’t drop it into your textbooks.

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