How to digest large amount of Study Material

Last time I heard about the syllabus of major competitive exams, I was like do we need to really master all these topics. The reality of the day is you have to multitask on various fronts while preparing for competitive exams be it Common Admission Test, GMAT, Bank exams. With lots of syllabus come lots of study material to be mastered and digested for making a mark at these exams.

How do we read the Material

We always face confusion and read in a haphazard way while dealing with large material. Most of the time we don’t plan how to read, when to read and don’t know why we are reading. We rely on coaching institutes and others whom we expect to be experts in guiding us. But the reality is they too may not have the clear picture. So how do we study the material?

Understand the Purpose

Before delving deep into any topic, its better to understand the background and purpose of that topic. Delving into complete history does not help us in our endeavor to master the topic but having a quick glance will suffice. Understanding the purpose really help us to focus our preparation on key essentials for mastering the topic.

Always Carry a Notes

Maintaining running notes and Notebook writing are long foregone arts which students have to master to make them stand apart from the rest of the competition. Writing notebooks really help the students to focus on few key things essential for making an impact rather than trying too much of material and get confused. Noting key points during the class and writing summary of your understanding on the same will help you to memorize and re-visit the material easily. This also acts a milestone to test your understanding of the subject. Frequently re-visiting the material and making sure that the topic is completed before moving to a new topic will help you focus on topic at hand.

Break into small chunks

Any large chunk of data is well understood if broken into small parts. Preparing strategies to master these small parts will ultimately help you to excel at the final topic. Use of flashcards or post it notes is highly recommended to keep the thoughts focused on sub-topic.  

Do a regular and periodic review

There is a saying in India that “When a lion walks the distance it always turns back to see how far it came”. Be like that lion and do a regular and periodic review of what you are learning. Keeping in touch with topics already learnt is as crucial as learning new topics. Always remember, its not about what you read but always about how well you understand and recollect the material that matters in competitive exams.

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