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Revolutionize Note-Taking: 3 Fun and Creative Ways to Study for Exams

Some people hate this saying, but I try to live by it: if you can’t avoid it, enjoy it. 

For many students, the unenjoyable thing is, of course, studying. Finals week has earned the title “hell week” because it is hard to bear — torturous, even. But if we prepare well in advance, and throw in some fun and creativity, studying isn’t so bad!

➳ Here are 3 ways you can have a little fun while studying/preparing for exams. Seriously, studying can be a creative expression and an extension of yourself!

A. Create an Infographic (like the one above)!

Ready (gather your notes), Get Set (organize them), Go (create)!

1- Take notes in class. This is pretty much a must, anyway, if you want to pass the class. You don’t have to write down everything the professor says, but take meticulous notes — you can take out the excess later!

2- Organize your notes. Try to review and organize your notes daily, since retention rate is 60% higher when you study your notes within one day of taking them. This is where you add your insights and take out the excess.

*If you can’t do this on a daily basis, try to do it at least on a weekly basis.

3- Visualize & get creative! This is the fun part. Create an infographic using Piktochart (or any other other free websites), and give life to your notes by adding colors, dimensions, and personality! Trust me, taking written words and giving them a “new look” will make studying a lot more fun and vibrant.

4- Soak in the information. Match images with concepts, and activate your right brain! Now your logical left brain is working in harmony with your artistic, creative senses.

5- Ace the test!

B. Write a Song/Spoken Word & Record Yourself! (And actually listen to yourself).

Create a song or a poem and record yourself! Include key terms & definitions, concepts, and important dates or details. Use literary devices like alliteration and acronyms to help you remember key concepts easily. On your commute to school or during your free time, listen to your recorded work and soak in the information! As much as you (may) hate listening to your own voice, recording and listening to yourself reciting the information will surely help you to remember more!

C. Create your own workbook (& test yourself!)

They say teaching is the best way to learn, and I totally agree. When you are preparing a lesson or creating a workbook (either to teach someone or to test yourself), you are thinking about the concepts, the overall message or theme, and the details that matter. You may not know it, but you are critically analyzing and synthesizing your notes.

TIP: ✏ As the semester progresses, keep adding to the workbook.

Include: essay questions, multiple choice questions, fill-in-the-blanks, matching, and more.

Bonus Benefit: You can re-use this material for tutoring (tutoring peers in college is a superb job, btw), or sell your notes to the Office of Disabilities or online.

SEE ALSO: 6 Simple but Proven Study Tips