Academic Habits (Study Edition)

Part of forming a study schedule that works for you is identifying when you study best. Most often we can assume all student study in the morning at a library with coffee in hand, this is not always the case. Sometimes this can look like:

  • Studying at home in the evenings when the house is quiet.
  • Studying at a local coffee shop first thing in the morning.
  • Studying as part of a peer-led study group either in-person or online.

But this list is certainly not exclusive, and it is important to remember that how you study best may not match the ways your peers study best!

Below we’ve listed ways you can accommodate the study schedule that works for you whether you’re an early bird or night owl.

Early Bird 

– you may be an early bird if you tend to:

  • Go to bed early and wake up early.
  • Feel your best when the day begins.
  • Feel like you have less energy in the late afternoon and evenings.
  • Find it difficult to stay awake past a certain time.

The perks of being an early bird are that they tend to be more proactive, planning, and using the energy they do have efficiently.

Some challenges often faced by early birds include having to deal with diminishing energy levels as the day progresses and that they are likely to need more sleep to keep functioning optimally.

Night Owl

– you may be a night owl if you tend to:

  • Stay up late and enjoy sleeping in.
  • Feel your best and have more energy later in the day/in the night.
  • Feel tired if you wake up early.
  • Find it difficult to stay alert during the day.

You may also be more likely to identify as a Night Owl if you are a shift worker.

The perks of being a Night Owl are that they tend to have more stamina and better focus, as they are less likely to experience the diminishing energy levels early birds often face as the day progresses.

Some challenges often faced by night owls include being able to fit both study and non-study activities into their schedules for later in the day/evening. This can sometimes lead to dedicating too little time to their studies.

So, which is best? 

Both early birds and night owls have their own sets of strengths and challenges. In our opinion, the best one is the one that works to their strengths and plans their studies effectively in the time they feel the most alert and energised – whatever hour that may be!

Universal study tips

– both early birds and night owls can apply these tips:

  • Make sure you are getting adequate amounts of sleep and eat healthy meals and snacks regularly to maximise your energy levels and focus.
  • Plan your study for a time you feel most alert and for when you are less likely to have interruptions.
  • Plan your trimester ahead of schedule and try not to leave study until the last minute.
  • Remove distractions from your study environment to discourage procrastination.
  • Set up a custom study space to best suit your needs.
  • Identify your productivity habits and work with them, not against them.

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