Study skills can be defined as a set of strategies, methods, devices and applications developed by experts in the field of education and child psychology to help a particular child perform better in schools, colleges and universities. However, the question which needs to be asked is whether effective study skills are the sole foundation of a sound education?
Chief study skill techniques
There are indeed several possible advantages of developing a set of strategies which will help a student to perform better. A student can get good grades, and a good percentile, in turn, will help him to find a job more easily. Experts divide study skills into several categories, each of which is related to the manner in which the skill is performed.
Some of the most important set of study skills are:
- Rote learning or skills based on memorization:
Rote learning refers to the process of memorizing information based on repetition. This type of learning focuses on mugging up certain concepts rather than having a deeper understanding of the same. Instances such as memorizing numbers, alphabets or multiplication tables can be considered as examples of rote learning. Though it cannot help in retaining the information for a longer time, this type of learning can actually help to learn and recall basic concepts of various subjects. In other words, rote learning is the best way to develop foundational knowledge.
- Reading comprehension skills:
The term reading comprehension refers to the ability to process text, understand its meaning, and to integrate with what the reader already knows. For a student to be able to understand what he is reading or listening to, it's important that he sharpens his comprehension skills.
- Note taking:
Note taking is basically a process of recording information captured from some other resource. Here, an individual maintains notes from transient sources, such as oral discussions at a meeting.
- Time management:
Time management refers to the process of planning and exercising conscious control of time spent on specific activities, especially to increase effectiveness, efficiency, and productivity. This process helps you a lot when you have a lot to accomplish in a little time. Time management helps you be more organized by enabling you to juggle with a lot of tasks with different priorities simultaneously.
There are several test-taking strategies that you can practice to perform better in exams. Sharpening test-taking skills can help you stay calm despite all the exam stress and score high. Some of the most effective test-taking strategies include:
- Take some time to relax before your exam.
- Write down all the important formulas or equations that you are likely to forget before starting your exam.
- Listen attentively to last-minute instructions given by the instructor.
- Read the exam instructions very carefully so that you don’t miss out on anything important.
- Look for cues.
- Plan your time in such a way that you get enough time to revise after completing your exam.
All these methods undoubtedly help you to perform better in schools and eventually in life. Now the question is:
Do Effective Study Skills Lead To Sound Education?
Well, yes! All the effective study skills mentioned above surely lead to sound education. However, considering these skills as the sole foundation of an effective education system is not correct. Apart from these effective skills, there’s a lot that goes into making an education system effective.
So, when someone asks - “Should effective study skills be the only foundation of a sound education system?’, the answer should is a clear and loud “NO”!
Implicit in this question is the assumption that sound education means performing better in schools and colleges. Higher percentile leads to higher chances of getting a job. However, when it comes to defining the purpose of education in a student’s life, it is often said that sound education is only meant to improve the desirability of a candidate in the job market? Shouldn’t education include an all-around social and ethical development of a student? Shouldn’t the student imbibe certain core ethical values that would enable him/her to contribute positively to the society?
In poor countries where the level of literacy is extremely low, the effort should always be on how to develop an ethical system of education; not necessarily a successful system of education, if success is defined in material terms only. Study skills no doubt help students to perform but they should not be the sole foundation of an effective education system. We also need to concentrate on the moral quality of the education being imparted.
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