Assessment: How do you study?

Have you read books about learning and studying skills that promise you instant success?

I'm afraid it's not that easy, but it will help you to become aware of how you study and what you could do differently.

Begin by thinking about your past experiences. How have you been studying? Then decide whether you need to work differently this time.

"Learning to learn" is a very popular concept at the moment - and there is a point. It's useful to know a bit about your own habits, preferences and learning style. Think about the following:

Reading, writing and summarizing

1. Do you like to read? Solve problems? Memorize? Recite? Interpret? Speak to groups?
2. Do you know how to summarize and do you think it's useful?
3. Do you try to understand the whole before you go for the details?
4. Do you review things and rewrite essays?
5. Do you ask questions about what you've studied?

Tests, where and how to study

1. How do you communicate what you've learned best? Through a written test, an essay or an interview/ discussion?
2. Do you like to study in a quiet environment or in a study group?
3. Do you think you learn best from several brief study sessions, or one longer one?
4. Do you like having access to information from a variety of sources or do you prefer to be told where and how to read?

Learning styles

1. How do you think you learn best?
a) by listening, b) by reading, c) by doing something (drawing, mind-mapping) or by d) watching pictures or a film?
2. How do you learn new words?
a) by reviewing and writing, b) by watching television, films or listen to lyrics, c) by reading textbooks, d) by playing games or e) by reading things I enjoy.
3. Are you easily bored and need variation or do you prefer learning a language by doing similar exercises and knowing what will happen?

How to study now...

1. What is your aim with this course?
2. How much time do you want to spend learning this?
3. Do you know what to focus on?
4. Do you know how to learn words, idioms?
5. Do you know how to improve your language proficiency?
6. Do you try to make it as fun and interesting as possible?

There are some places on the Net where you can take a learning style inventory and read about studying skills. Here are a few if you're interested:

Learning to learn
- information and a learning style inventory (which is quite difficult to find, go to the site map).

How to learn - a place with information about learning styles and a test that you can take on line (they claim NASA uses the same test).


Now write a comment about your own studying habits, learning style and your aim with this course. Save it in your portfolio.