Study environment, timetable, timely review and more: Tips and tricks for self-study – The Indian Express

— Dinesh Verma
An ever-expanding global population along with an increasing number of new technologies has brought about a rise in self-studying across all age groups. Education has moved way beyond the classrooms to the comfort of our home, on our convenient time and at our own pace. So much so that some would argue that the classroom model is not sufficient to meet the intellectual needs of individuals in such an interconnected society. 
While the classroom model is unlikely to be replaced as a whole — keeping in mind the benefits of a physical space for collaboration with intellectual and social growth — self-learning will likely become increasingly a part of traditional educational institutions. Further, the easy availability of massive open online courses (MOOC) has fueled the growth of self-learners, be it learning a new skill or obtaining a certificate for career advancement. The low costs of these methods of education are an added advantage for one and all.   
Being a self-learner works across the board. On one hand, it can help high school students to improve transcripts, and on the other, it allows professionals to learn additional skills and grow at work. This even helps professionals switch to a high-paying job or a career of their choice. 
Self-learning may seem difficult at first, but given enough time and having the right mindset makes it a whole lot easier. Here are some useful tips for practicing successful self-studying:
As you set on your journey of self-learning, do not be in a rush to complete it in a jiffy. Set realistic goals — ones that you can accomplish along with your daily workload and a hectic weekly schedule. Make sure you chalk out some time aside to let your mind and body rest. 
There is no ‘one-size-fit-all’ when it comes to learning. Different people have different ways to learn, for example some find studying in the early morning hours better for grasping power, and others prefer late night study sessions. Find out what works best for you and stick to it, while looking at ways to improve it further.
Break down your study material into short sessions to be covered over a period of time, instead of trying to cover a lot of material in a short time. By giving yourself sufficient time to study in short, frequent sessions allows you to enjoy and learn the subject more effectively without feeling burdened or panicked. Besides, being in front of the computer or your notes for too long can wear down your focus sooner than later, and you might end up losing interest in the subject altogether. 
Take time to review the study material the same day you learn it, whether it is practicing a new skill, or reading a chapter again. This helps with long-term absorption of material and decreases the need of cramming in the future. It may seem time-consuming in the beginning, but regular practice works to help you understand better and faster.
To enjoy the benefits of learning remotely, it is important you prepare and maintain a study environment such as setting aside a designated space with a working table or desk. Such a space will allow you to enter the learning mode, and align your thoughts and actions with learning.    
In summation, self-studying is a great tool to enrich your learning experience and it helps the young and old alike when mastered appropriately. So, whether you are preparing for high school or for a career advancement, self-learning can take you places with exciting opportunities, academically and professionally. Remember to make use of the doors of technology which has put knowledge at your fingertips with all the easily accessible and low-cost tools at your disposal.  
(The writer is the founder and CEO of Gullybaba Publishing)

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