Okay first of all I’m not saying that I’m a pro in studying and sometimes in life, you concentrate on the wrong topics, misunderstand sth, have a harder time understanding the issue, have bad luck or simply didn’t study enough.
However, there are just some problems you can avoid:
1.Don’t lie to yourself - I am convinced that some people really believe they studied for around 5 hours but all they did is copying the book and not remembering a thing they actually wrote. Summaries are good and useful but summarizing doesn’t mean studying. Back in Budapest when I was part of the pre-med program, I really wasn’t ready to study a buttload of material yet, so I watched Tv-series while studying…yes that didn’t work out at all( same goes with your phone.)
2. Don’t waste your time - Speaking of summaries, they take a lot of time and sometimes you are right before a looming deadline. So either you ask a nice friend for their summary or check your schools g-drive( incase you have one).
3. Put your phone away - It’s all about quality not quantity. You can either sit there for 4 hours with your phone distracting you every 10 minutes or sit for 1 1/2 hour without one and have a relaxing break afterwards( if you need a small break try to read 3-4 pages of a book). Your concentration will lower after 30 minutes anyway so it makes more sense to fully use this 30 minutes. This is something, I still struggle with sometimes, especially when you need to stay in contact with your colleagues. Webwhatsapp really helps to avoid this problem.
4. Make a to-do list - I don’t know about you, but sometimes the amount of material feels overwhelming. Making a to-do list the night before, the morning before or even the week before an exam makes me feel more organized and ahead of myself.
5. Small rewards - I feel like, that during a hard examination session small rewards can make all the difference. It doesn’t have to be materialistic, but telling yourself that after a particular topic you’ll make yourself a nice dinner or even just a cup of tea can motivate you to hustle again.
6. Find your time of the day - Some people will tell you that they stayed up all night to study and you may feel pressured - but don’t be. Everyone is at it’s best during another time and it’s important to find yours. I rather stop studying around 12 and wake up early.
7. Go outside - staying inside all day long is sometimes necessary but try to use this small break you spend on your phone to just walk 5-10 minutes in fresh air.
8. Change locations - I’m not sure if this is just something psychological but changing your study environment now and then can really motivate you. I sometimes travel from my desk to the living room to starbucks or the library - it really helps sometimes!!
9. Don’t listen to others - This is probably the MOST important one. So many people from my year listen to upper years and forget to make the experience themselves. „ He said that only 5 people passed last year“, „they said you’ll have to start 3 weeks before…“ They stress about something that hasn’t happened yet and dramatize every little test. Just because only 5 people passed last year doesn’t mean you’ll fail - You don’t know if they even studied. Just because some people needed 3 weeks to study something doesn’t mean you’ll - you don’t know how they studied. It’s good to know the facts but make your own experience.
10. Don’t compare yourself to others - Everyone is different - I know shocker right? Some people are just faster in studying or study while listening to the teacher. Others need more time, don’t need a summary or study better in a group! I hate it when people feel good about themselves just because somebody failed and they passed - this is just a fucked up value. You should focus on yourself , support your friends in a crisis and help each other out! Entitled people need others to fail in order to feel good so don’t be that kind of jerk.
11. Question yourself - my number one rule is if I can talk about this topic perfectly I’ll have a good chance of passing. Sometimes me and my roommate question each other ( especially before anatomy practicals heeeelp) or I stand infront of the mirror and see how fluent I am in this particular topic. Studying in a group of friends also gives you more perspective sometimes. You talk about it together and we’ll remember their jingle, idea or get a better understanding.
I hope this'll help you guys!