The days of studying in libraries that insist on absolute silence, hunched over falling apart books and messy handwritten notes, are long over – decades ago we began our great leap into the Information Age. Now, sitting at your computer or looking at your phone, you have access to more information about more subjects than most people in history could ever even imagine, let alone learn about. Despite this, some professors (and even some students) insist that studying from physical resources is more effective than studying digitally. This simply isn’t true, and we here at Make An Exam absolutely hate the idea of students studying in less effective ways simply because those around them are possessed with a very particular and focused sort of aversion to technology. In this blog post, we’ve collected five of the best reasons studying online is superior, and why you should take advantage of your ability to do so:
- You can study anywhere you want. With all the development in computer and internet technologies, you can study online in practically any location that feels most comfortable or is most practical for you. If you’re using the internet to maximize your studying, you don’t have to lug a half dozen textbooks around with you if you want to study in the coffee shop, don’t have to go on a long commute from your home to the library, don’t have to struggle to find a way to shield your notes so they aren’t blown away by the wind as you sit in the park. When you have your notes on your computer or your phone, and do your studying on the internet, you can sit down wherever you like and get it finished in comfort while you relax in one of your favourite spaces. This will help reduce any excess anxiety you have about studying, as well as increasing the chances that any breaks you take from studying will be enjoyable, and – if you choose a location with open space, where people don’t mind a bit of movement -- can allow you to exercise and otherwise be active, either while you study or during your breaks from studying. This exercise and exertion can be similarly important for reducing anxiety; if you haven’t already, you may want to read our blog post about exam season anxiety to learn more about this, and to learn ways to deal with any anxiety you’re struggling with: Studying Through Exam Season Anxiety . Ultimately, the internet provides you with a freedom of movement that you wouldn’t otherwise have while studying. Taking advantage of this freedom can allow you to study at your own pace, and fit it into your life in a way that would be otherwise impossible.
- You can study any time you want. Because of the aforementioned ease of access that online studying provides, your available time to do so is blown wide open. Whether you’re commuting to work or school, on your way to meet a friend, enjoying the fresh air at a local park, waiting in line to get into the movie theatre, or simply sitting at home – you can be studying! The possibilities for, and benefits of, studying wherever and whenever you’d like cannot be overstated. They allow for much greater adaptability to any situation you find yourself in, and frees up more of your time for both studying and fun. This increased adaptability and ability to maximize your time can help greatly decrease any stress or anxiety you have around studying, and allows you to study far more than you would be able to if you relied solely on a pen, some paper, and a textbook for your studying needs. What’s more, your back will thank you for only carrying around your laptop or smartphone, instead of a pile of textbooks and a mountain of notes. Nobody wants to have to deal with both an exam and back pain all in the same day!
- You can study any way you want. There are a million ways to study, and a million more ways to study online than there are anywhere else. Why rely on flash cards and paper notes when you have the greatest set of study tools and the greatest collection of knowledge humanity has ever had, right at your fingertips? By studying on the internet, you open up the possibility of watching videos about your subjects, engaging with interactive media meant to teach you about them, and numerous other methods of absorbing information that would be unavailable if you were to close yourself off from the worldwide web. For example, websites like makeanexam.com are trailblazers, providing new and exciting ways to study, ways which have been shown to reduce exam anxiety, have been shown to enable you to better remember the subjects you study, and – best of all, in my opinion -- which replicate the exam environment, not only helping improve the effectiveness of your studying, but also lessening any exam anxiety you feel: you’re far less likely to sit down, look at your exam, and blank out on all the information you crammed into your head if your strategy for studying has prepared you not just for what knowledge you should have, but how you’ll be tested on it. And the internet, being full of people, provides you with a near limitless number of peers to discuss the subject with. Being given the opportunity to recite your knowledge to others, to bounce ideas off them, to discuss and think about the topics beyond rote memorization, is an invaluable thing that the internet makes readily accessible. If you’d like to learn more about how makeanexam.com can improve your study habits, Nicholas Gust’s blog post on the subject goes over everything I’ve mentioned here, while going into more detail and providing many other reasons it’s superior to traditional studying: How does makeanexam.com improve your grades? To reject these superior methods of studying, to instead sit idly with your notes and a highlighter, is to resign yourself to not succeeding at the highest level you’re capable of. As a student you have a vast potential, and it’s only through proper utilization of all the tools at your disposal that you can reach that potential.
- You have access to nearly unlimited information. When studying in a more traditional, offline way, sometimes you will come across parts of your notes or your textbook that you don’t understand. In some situations this isn’t a problem, but if you’re not studying in class or during your professor’s office hours it can be difficult to get clarification about these points, and when you do get clarification it will often be days after you initially had the question. This can halt study sessions, especially if the information is vital to understanding the more advanced ideas in the subject you’re trying to improve in. When your study sessions are stop-and-start affairs like this, and you have to wait on other people’s schedules to learn valuable things, your studying becomes ineffective and your own schedule starts to fall apart as you have to rearrange your study patterns to get these questions answered. By utilizing the internet, you can gain knowledge and clarity about these things without having to wait for your professor; with a quick search through the numerous academic websites available, you can often find the answers you’re looking for in just a few minutes. There are also many people interested and educated in the subject you’re studying, and conversing with them on study sites or social media can provide you with a much deeper understanding of the subject than you would otherwise have. This ability to have questions answered immediately, and to discuss that information with peers, is essential for ensuring easy and effective studying.
- You’re better prepared for life outside of school. Like it or not, the internet has become an integral part of society. Whether at work or enjoying your free time, you will inevitably have to engage with the internet in a myriad of ways. Even if you can’t stand the idea of an office job, or any other employment that might involve a computer, you’ll need to be capable of using the internet with a certain level of expertise to connect with friends, to find events and concerts to attend, to play video games, to be fully aware of what’s going on in your community. Internet literacy is perhaps the greatest skill to have in the modern age, and will allow you to not only excel in school, the workplace, and social life, but will also help you expand your view of and opportunities in these areas, so you can find better jobs, have a better social life, and do all of these things much more easily than if you were to try and go without internet access. Part of the purpose of school is to prepare you for your life after it, and by studying online you’re helping ensure you’re as well prepared as possible, not just in the subject you’re studying, but also in the ways you interact with the world around you. Your confidence and knowledge about the internet will serve you well for the rest of your life.
The internet is an amazing invention that has revolutionized every aspect of our life, from work and school to friendship and romance to the ways we shop. It is perhaps the definitive technology of our age, and will shape humanity for generations to come. It behooves you to incorporate it into your studying, and while there are many reasons beyond these five to do so, we believes these to be the most important ones, and hope we’ve convinced you to give it a try: you won’t regret it.