Of all the course subjects, mathematics is often the most complained about the subject. Many students speak of math being boring, complicated, and among the main subjects whose assignments and homework they find incredibly challenging to complete.
Unfortunately, math is hard to escape. Even when pursuing a course in the arts or humanities, you will find some math classes still required. Because math is foundational, you will find it much of a struggle if you had been struggling before college.
Having said this, performing well in math is not impossible, and many students do so.
Here are some tips to help you learn how to study math alone in self-study. Ultimately, these tips should also help you improve your overall math grade.
Believe In Yourself
The perception of math being difficult is so common that sometimes students start their classes with a defeatist attitude.
What this does is demotivate and discourage you. This can often cause you not to put your best foot forward, assuming that there is nothing you can do to perform well in the subject.
Strive to approach math with a positive can-do attitude. If need be, you can have one or two positive reaffirmations to say back to yourself every time you need to sit down for solo study.
Over time, whatever negative notions you had will begin to be overridden by positive ones. Once you start believing that you are capable of doing well, you will only need to put in the hard work before you start seeing improvements in your grades.
Take Extensive Notes
Most students stick to copying down formulas and problems solved on the board in class. While this is useful, there are better ways to go about it.
One of the best ways to study math is by taking notes and noting down the instructor’s tips and explanations in class.
Later on, as you sit down for alone study time, these notes not only direct you on what to do, they will also help with memory and recall.
An additional benefit of studying this way is that it encourages active learning. This ensures you remain engaged in class as opposed to zoning out.
The internet has made it possible for people to access numerous services and resources. For this reason, the internet is quite a gem for students.
Some of the resources you can make use of during alone study is watching instructional math videos. There are thousands of these online that give step by step instructions on how to solve math problems.
If your notes have gaps or you had an off day where you were not paying attention in class, these videos can quickly help you catch up.
Another online resource you can make use of is Homework doer. This is a professional online service that helps students with their coursework whenever they need it. However, ensure to understand the content of the delegated work later on.
Master Key Concepts
Everything you learn in math has a logical basis. Understanding what this is going a long way in helping you know as opposed to memorization.
Indeed, memorization rarely ever works well for any subject.
As you do your private study, make a point of understanding the concept behind the topics you learn and the problems you are required to solve.
Similarly, try and find real-life applications for the same. This is one sure way of helping you engage much better with course content.
Learning real-life applications also opens you up to why you are learning certain things, as well as the problems you can solve by using learned math knowledge.
This makes learning more fun, engaging, and connecting problems to their applications make it easier to recall learned content in an exam.
Create an Ideal Study Environment
For a long time, it was often believed that the best place to study is a quiet, secluded place. This is not necessarily true.
The best environment for one to study is one where one feels most comfortable, alert, and focused on the task at hand.
Have your music on if it helps you study. The basics, however, like a comfortable seat and good lighting, should remain unchanged.
Whenever you find yourself losing focus, going over the same material over and over, or even feeling signs of fatigue, take a break.
You will be amazed at how refreshing a short walk and fresh air can make you feel. Ultimately, the more energy you have, the more focused and productive you are going to be.
While group study offers a lot of opportunities to break the monotony, the alone study lacks this benefit. Therefore, it’s essential to be conscious of your productivity levels and find ways to maximize it.
If you put off your math study time to the end of the day after a long day of back-to-back classes, you will be setting yourself up for failure.
Math requires a lot of focus and concentration. These are hard to have when you are already fatigued after a full day of school and social engagements. Keep this in mind as you create a timetable.
Schedule your math study times to times of day when you are most alert. These are often during the morning or on easy days when your schedule is not too full.
You will achieve more when your brain is sharp. You can then schedule less demanding subjects around this.
The best way to learn math is by doing. Before settling down for a study session, always ensure to have a coursebook that has math problems, and possibly, their solutions and answers at the back.
At the end of each topic, attempt to solve a problem or two to test your understanding. Do not be discouraged if you get the answer wrong. Review your errors, strive to understand formulas and techniques, and keep at it.
0When your exam is being marked, you still get marks for correct formulas and proper technique, even if the answer is wrong.