Learning Styles | Research | Critical thinking | Literature/Critical Reviews | Academic writing | Referencing | Time management| Data analysis
‘Study skills are the methods, strategies and attitudes that will help you get the most out of your education’. Have a look at What to expect from academic study for an introduction to what to expect and how best to prepare yourself for academic study.
It is well worth investing in a copy of Stella Cottrell’s The Study Skills Handbook. It has useful advice, tips and hints on most of the study skills you will need to successfully complete your studies, including critical thinking, time management, plagiarism and referencing, and exam skills.
Remember to check the book’s companion website for additional information and resources.
You should also have a look at the Study Skills Connected website for useful resources about how to most effectively use technology in your studies. Watch the ‘how-to’ videos for tips on using Google and Google Scholar for searching the internet, using Twitter for academic study and using LinkedIn for professional development.
Everyone learns in a different way. Some people prefer to learn through seeing, some through speaking and listening and some through experimenting. How do you learn best?
Try the learning styles questionnaire and find out.
If you’d like to try something different, try working out your learning style using origami.
It’s also thought that although we use both sides of our brain for reasoning, we may have a dominant side that is either analytical and prefers structure (left dominance), or is spontaneous and visual (right-sided dominance). This may also affect the way we study and learn.
Try the Left/Right Brain Quiz to see which you are, and get some tips to help you study.
What will your research be about?
Are you trying to decide on a research question? Here are some tips and thoughts from some students who have completed their research.
In this video students discuss research methods. Although the students in the video are discussing research methods as they apply to writing their dissertations, their experiences and suggestions will help you if you are working on your final assignment or project.
This video ‘Example of Critical Thinking’ discusses what is meant by critical thinking and offers some advice and suggestions about how to show this in your project or dissertation project.
How should I structure and write my literature review?
A critical review is an analysis and evaluation of a piece of text. This text may be a journal article , a book or a chapter from a book.
These are two examples of well-written critical reviews to give you some ideas on how to write your own critical review.
Critical review 1
Critical review 2
Why write essays:
When you are writing your essays remember you are writing about subjects that you don’t know very much about. You are in fact writing in order to learn. The aim is to learn more about your subject and your work demonstrates what you have learnt.
Have a look at this Guide to Academic Writing for some help with writing your essays and assignments.
In this video students discuss writing their final projects and offer some tips on managing the process.
The Academic Phrasebank is a resource which will help you choose the appropriate academic phrases when writing your assignments or reports. It includes examples of opening statements to introduce your assignment or subject, ways to refer to literature, how to report results of research, discuss findings and write conclusions.
Did you know you can use referencing tools in Microsoft Word to easily and quickly create your bibliography and add citations (references) in your assignment or project. Have a look at the How to use the referencing tools in Office to see how easy it is.
Here are some tips from tutors on managing your time when working on your project or dissertation.
In this video students discuss how they managed their time.
Analysing your Data
In this video students discuss the methods they used for analysing their data.
In this video a student discusses the positive impact that completing his practice-based project has had on his career and professional context.