We’re at that point of the semester again: exams.
Tests, quizzes, presentations, essays, you name it and it will be assigned and completed in the course of a week. So instead of frantically calculating what grade you need to pass the class (thanks to I-Learn for removing the “what-if calculator”), we offer an easier and more beneficial week-before-midterms survival technique: find a study buddy.
Increase your score
Have you ever heard the phrase “two heads are better than one?” Well, it’s true. Study buddies help increase your knowledge and academic scores.
According to a study, 23% more students passed their tests because they studied with another student instead of studying on their own. While they call it “classmate peer-coaching,” we like the term “study buddy” better.
The reason for the higher score? Studying with another student helps cement the information you’ve learned while also filling in concepts you don’t fully grasp.
Every student takes notes differently, studies differently and retains information differently. That’s why having more than one viewpoint for the same information is important. You may perceive the textbook as saying one thing, while your buddy thinks the textbook means another.
Discussing different viewpoints helps each person to understand the material further and allows each buddy to double-check the validity of their opinion. Your buddy may understand some methods or problems that you don’t, and vice versa.
(Cue Napoleon Dynamite voice) People like partners with skills.
There’s also the communication aspect. Sometimes studying works best by having your buddy act as a soundboard as you verbally walk through a problem. Studying with someone in your class helps because they have received the same information and instruction. If you get off-track or on a tangent, your buddy can help bring you back to the task at hand.
While you’re cooped up in the library for 10 hours a day for the week leading up to the test, this person becomes your social life. You get to enjoy the company of a buddy while you both work towards a common goal—passing the exam. Also, having another person present makes you more accountable and less likely to procrastinate.
Most importantly, make sure to pick a good study buddy. Your first instinct may be to partner up with a close friend, which is fine. Just be sure they won’t be more distracting than helpful! Oftentimes, it’s best to pick someone with whom you’re friends but not best friends.
Study buddies only work if both partners are willing to work hard. If one of you slacks off, the other will suffer. It’s a mental three-legged race, so pick a good partner! But if you find that you need a lot of help, consider a tutor. While a study buddy is good for reviewing and studying, a tutor can provide additional help and guidance.