The life of a student often entails spending hours in libraries poring over textbooks and notes. It can be pretty difficult to stay motivated. But changing up your study sessions can break up the monotony and enhance your capacity to learn.

You can use a combination of study methods—such as quizzes, flash cards and mnemonic devices—to diversify your pre-exam routine. And these days, there are tons of apps that can help add some variety. Next time you have a study session, try using one of these apps to complement your more traditional strategies:

Strategy: Follow a revision schedule

Research confirms that “distributive learning”—spreading out revision over several days, weeks or months—is more effective than cramming the night before an exam. To improve your performance on exams, create a study schedule that divides periods of revision into manageable chunks.

 An app for that: MyStudyLife

MyStudyLife is a virtual planning app that allows you to create a schedule for tackling assignments, preparing for exams and more. This app has several advantages over a paper agenda: you can receive notifications about incomplete tasks, sync your timetable to access it on multiple devices, and easily colour-code pending tasks.

Strategy: Quiz yourself

Testing yourself on course material is a useful way of applying knowledge and predicting questions that may appear on an exam. Create quizzes tailored to your own learning needs and work with peers to test one another.

 An app for that: Topgrade

This app, and its sister app Topgrade Quiz Maker, allow you to design virtual quizzes and explore study material made by others. You can test yourself or collaborate with peers to work on quizzes in multiplayer mode. As you race to score the highest number of points on a quiz, you’ll find that revision can be enjoyable—and even addictive.

Strategy: Use flash cards

Reviewing cards that feature key concepts from a course can improve your ability to quickly recall information. Flashcards are also convenient because their compact size lets you study virtually anywhere. Plus, reviewing flashcards over an extended period of time helps fix information in your long-term memory.

An app for that: StudyBlue

StudyBlue features a plethora of crowd-sourced study material, including virtual flashcards. You can create your own flashcards or browse premade decks, organized by subject. Although some of its features require a paid subscription, the base version of this app is free.

By Maha Ansari

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