Study skills or study strategies are approaches applied to learning. They are generally critical to success in school, considered essential for acquiring good grades, and useful for learning throughout one’s life. Respicius Rwehumbiza in his book “Understanding Examination Techniques and Effective study Strategies” in 2013 asserted that, most students fail in examinations simply because they lack study skills and/or examination taking techniques.
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Study skills are an array of study skills, which may tackle the process of organizing and taking in new information, retaining information, or dealing with assessments. They include mnemonics, which aid the retention of lists of information, effective reading, and concentration techniques, as well as efficient notetaking.
While often left up to the student and their support network, study skills are increasingly taught in High School and at the University level. A number of books and websites are available, from works on specific techniques such as Tony Buzan’s books on mind-mapping, to general guides to successful study such as those by Stella Cottrell and Understanding Examination Techniques and Effective study Strategies by Respicius Rwehumbiza.
More broadly, any skill which boosts a person’s ability to study and pass exams can be termed a study skill, and this could include time management and motivational techniques.
Study skills are discrete techniques that can be learned, usually in a short time, and applied to all or most fields of study. They must therefore be distinguished from strategies that are specific to a particular field of study e.g. music or technology, and from abilities inherent in the student, such as aspects of intelligence or learning styles.