Staying on top of your coursework in college can be a daunting task, but before you even hit the books you’re faced with a question that might not be as obvious as you think: where am I going to study? Every student has a unique preference, so let’s look at some benefits of the study spaces you can find on any campus.
Your Residence Hall Room
With the shortest commute and the most personal items available, many college students find comfort studying in their own room. Another huge benefit is you don’t have to worry about forgetting your books or materials back in your room, because, oh wait, you’re still there! On the other hand, without the proper consideration a room can easily become the trickiest spot to study, so it’s important to set yourself up for success: have a conversation with your roommate(s) about when you’d like to study in the room, and keep any distracting objects (phone, laptop, video games, etc.) out of reach.
Many students gravitate towards the campus library to get serious about studying, and the benefits are extensive. These buildings are often the best equipped with tables, private rooms, public computers, printers, and thousands upon thousands of books (of course)! Additionally, a lot of collegiate libraries are also home to academic offices, tutors, and other resources. If you find yourself saddled with lots of reading and writing in your coursework, this is a great go-to for serious scholastic work.
Cafés and Food Joints
Just because you’re sitting down for a few hours and focusing on homework doesn’t mean you won’t work up an appetite! These are the spots on campus with the best atmosphere if you’re the type of person who likes to have some nondescript background noise while hitting the books. Even for those who are more selective about their sound environment, you can always pop in some earbuds and get the tunes you need for peak productivity. The greatest benefit of these locations is what some people initially perceive to be their greatest weakness: the foot traffic. The brain can only concentrate on one task for so long, so periodic breaks are key for optimal efficiency while studying. With all the people lingering in these areas you can achieve a healthy balance of productivity and fun relaxation, making it a staple study option for many college students.
Academic Building Lounges
Many of the buildings on campus that hold classrooms and lectures halls also contain offices and suites where professors grade assignments, conduct research, and advise their students. These offices are often clustered in or around a study lounge or bubble, giving students easy access to guidance and advice whenever questions or concerns arise while studying. Plus, the extra exposure gives you an advantage with your professors, even if you aren’t stopping in and asking them a question every day. When professors see you consistently putting in the work outside of class then they’re more likely to value having you in the classroom. Once you’re able to create that initial recognition with professors then you can start to strengthen that relationship into a real rapport, which enhances your performance and enjoyment with the materials you’re learning.
Few final thoughts: every campus is different, and each student has their own unique approach to studying. Try out a few study spots, ask other students for suggestions, and don’t feel bad if one spot just isn’t for you. Capitalize on your strengths and keep those pencils sharp!