Efficient learning: how to learn more in less time

The deadline for that important exam is inexorably approaching, but the subject matter just won’t sink into the learner’s head – this scenario naturally causes great frustration and stress. 

For this reason, it is essential to keep a cool head in the first place, because fortunately there are some valuable tips available to memorise the learning material for the upcoming exam in the shortest possible time. 

The following article shows what these tips are and how they ensure that learning is extremely efficient in the shortest possible time.

The “Courage to Fill the Gap” Concept

The concept of “courage to fill in the gaps” is quite well known, but many people do not believe that it has a high chance of success. However, this is primarily due to the fact that this learning tip is often misinterpreted. 

It does not prove successful if some learning topics are arbitrarily omitted. Rather, courage to leave gaps means that the existing learning content is analysed in order to then make sensible cutbacks. 

Thus, this strategy goes hand in hand with the fact that not every detail of the learning material is fully internalised. How the learning material is selected in the individual case must, however, be determined pragmatically. The main question to be answered in this context is which topics will be of particularly high relevance in the examination and which tasks will be assessed with the highest possible score. 

If the often misinterpreted concept is used smartly and well thought out, there is also no risk that the point weighting of the topics that are personally preferred turns out to be surprisingly much lower than expected in reality. In German, for example, Free Book Summaries on the books discussed in class are extremely helpful in this respect. 

Structuring the learning units

Especially when there is only a limited amount of time available for learning and perhaps even several exams have to be taken in quick succession, it is essential to structure the individual learning units in a well thought-out manner. This is an enormous help in maintaining an overview of the learning material and memorising it. 

Structuring can take about an hour per subject. The learning material should first be divided into coherent blocks with the same topics, then the individual sub-topics are prioritised. 

Afterwards, a spreadsheet programme is an excellent tool to draw up a concrete study plan for each day until the exam. 

Turning time pressure into an advantage

People in general definitely belong to the group of creatures that always strive for absolute efficiency, which also means that they usually perform particularly well under pressure. 

This learning tip can be particularly advantageous in practice when only two or only one exam is due. This way, the amount of learning material is much smaller and there is more room for planning. 

Suitable time limits must be defined for each subject area and all types of tasks – the learning material must then be mastered by these time limits. At first, this time pressure may seem counterproductive, but it is actually an enormous help when it comes to strictly pursuing the learning goals. 

Even if the mastery of the material at the previously defined point in time is not one hundred percent, there is still generally good preparation for the upcoming exam.

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