Monthly Archive for August, 2009

How To Deal With Teachers

I am not a big proponent of being manipulative with teachers, but the reality of the academic system is that you do need to deal with them. Tell me your story or ask me a question here by posting a comment and I will help you deal with the worst teacher(s) you have. Please do NOT use their real names -this is not about retaliation. I want to help you deal with the problem – be specific about the issue your having. Make sure you focus on TEACHING and STUDYING ISSUES – not personality conflicts.

I’m here to help you get better grades with less effort!

The 80/20 Rule For Students

The Pareto Principle also called the 80/20 rule is one of the most powerful study techniques I teach in my study book. Simply put, success in school is about knowing WHAT to study and WHEN. In my study book, I combine that with a concept from the 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People that takes away all the guesswork for you. It’s priceless to any student stressed about about exams, lab reports, quizzes and term papers.

Continue reading ‘The 80/20 Rule For Students’

Cheap Textbooks – Available Online

If you’re a student and are looking for cheap textbooks, take a look at www.ValoreBooks.com they have thousands of textbooks for every conceivable subject. What you might consider if you want to get better grades, is buy a second textbook for those courses you’re struggling with. By having a different author explaining the SAME subject/topic, he/she might be able to say it in a way that you understand more clearly. I’ve done that on numerous occasions – for those subjects that were particularly hard.

Go ahead and take a look at what’s available – at those prices, you can’t afford NOT to buy it!

Taking Drugs To Study Better

I need to tell you a story about what happened to a fellow classmate back in Engineering School. But first of all, let me declare my bias. I am a coffee virgin, which means I have never consumed a cup of coffee – ever. The reason is that back in my undergraduate days, I saw my classmates drinking 8 to 12 cups/day to stay awake studying for exams… I thought, even then that consuming ANYTHING in that quantity can’t be good…

A Study Mistake To Avoid

That being said, my story takes coffee to a whole new level – caffeine pills. Back in my day, they were called ‘pick me ups’. They were sold over the counter without a prescription. Students took them INSTEAD OF or IN ADDITION to coffee – to stay up and cram for exams. Many students did this.

I did it – ONCE.

I had 3 consecutive days with 5 FINAL EXAMS, each 3 hours, worth 70 to 100% of the course final grade – Canadian Engineering Schools did this to flunk the least capable students ON PURPOSE…

Anyway – it was an ‘impossible’ schedule. So I planned it out. I would get some sleep on DAY ONE, then go straight through the other two days WITHOUT sleep to MAXIMISE every single minute in-between each 3-hour exam to memorise and review everything I could. I would go +/- 36 hours without sleep.

It worked.

Does that mean I am condoning using caffeine or drugs to study?

Not quite – keep reading.

For the next week, I was totally drained… “brain dead”… I had never hit the wall like that ever before. I promised myself “never again”. Thank God it was the END of the SEMESTER.

I was not the only one to suffer these ‘after effects’… But I was one of the few to learn the lesson.

I had a classmate – I forget his name, we’ll call him John. John did not learn the lesson. He scraped by that semester and decided that the following semester he would use the pills for the midterms AND the finals. He got addicted to a false sense of confidence and started taking them at the BEGINNING of the semester.

By the time the midterms came around, he was strung out, exhausted and barely able to focus. He failed every single one of his midterms. By the time the final exams came around, he was on his last legs. He failed those too.

The sad part is John was smart enough to be an Engineer, just not smart enough about HOW TO STUDY WITHOUT CUTTING CORNERS.

John got expelled from Engineering School and his destiny forever altered – because of caffeine pills that he thought would help.

The moral of the story is that there are two ways to try to get ahead faster- take a short cut by learning better study strategies or CUT CORNERS by trying to cheat by taking drugs or otherwise.

I taught myself HOW TO STUDY more effectively rather than spending MORE time – that is how I came about writing my study book. I became so good AT studying that people around me kept asking how I managed to get ‘it all done’ AND have a life outside of school…

I learned the lesson the FIRST TIME – I never took another caffeine pill after that – NEVER NEEDED TO.

If you find yourself in the situation where you need to take pills to stay up late at night studying – I can tell you right now – YOUR STUDY HABITS SUCK.

When I started my Engineering Degree, I was taking 4 or 5 courses per semester. In my last semester, I took a WHOPPING 7 COURSES at the same time – to finish my degree in 3 1/2 years graduating with a DOUBLE MAJOR.

All possible BECAUSE I learned HOW TO STUDY.

Whenever tempted by drugs to stay awake or HIGH CAFFEINE DRINKS – DON’T START. They are addictive drugs that will have consequences… Consequences that could rob you on the very dream you have – the REASON you are considering taking them in the first place.

Don’t do it.

Learn HOW to study instead.

How To Speed Read Twice As Fast As You Do Now

This is a new video that I published on YouTube recently. It’s a summary of How To Speed Read which, as a reader of this blog, you know by now is the #1 most important skill you need to acquire to get the best grades with the least amount of effort. It’s incredibly simple and easy to learn, in fact I have taught thousands of students, many of them grade school kids… Why not you? Have a look at this short YouTube video and then decide you can do it.

How To Speed Read Twice As Fast As You Do Now