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How to Develop Independent Study Skills

Independent study skills homelingua blog

Independent learning and studying are skills that can be very important to have towards the next step in your studies, or even career. Independent learning allows an individual to think, act and pursue their own studies autonomously, without the same levels of support received from a teacher at school. You are then expected to conduct your own research and manage your own studying time. There are some very basic things you can do to start training yourself in becoming an independent student.

The first thing to do is to build up the confidence. It is not always the simplest thing to be autonomous when studying, some guidance is always helpful. However, if you train yourself to study independently, you will build up your confidence and that will lead to motivation. When you have the motivation and determination of self-learning, you will be able to take on a few more challenging study projects, which will in turn help with resilience to overcome those challenges. Practising working on your own for a long period of time, without the help of a teacher is a sure-fire way to build up your skill. If you can, do as much research as you can on your current project, and try to vary all the sources.

 

When your goals are set, you have a clear view of what the next few hours or days are going to look like, and you can space things out with breaks. Having detailed goals set will allow you to manage your time better. Effective time management is a big part of being an independent student, as you are more likely to have several study projects going on at once. Setting expectations and knowing them will make you more comfortable on your independent study and you will definitely not be daunted if you have to tackle a few things at the same time.  Finally, when in revision mode, try cutting down on lengthy phrases, sentences or paragraphs when preparing your notes. Keep the key message in short form when you want to memorise something. Doing this will not only mean you don’t have to go back to your books, but understanding something this way on your own will also mean that you have less questions to ask a teacher, making you more autonomous.

 

After these basic, easy tips, you should be well on your way to being a brilliantly independent student. Having good independent study skills will ensure a smooth transition from different points across your studies or career. Just remember to gain the confidence and never stop practising (it does make perfect!). If you’d like to fine-tune your studying skills before a big exam, check out our Exam Preparation course here.

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