When an exam approaches, virtually all students agree they need to study and most will, albeit with varying intensity. Most will study the same way they always have—using the strategies they think work. The question students won’t ask is: How should I study for this exam? They don’t recognize that what they need to learn can and should be studied in different ways.
When they get a good grade on an exam, students regularly attribute the success to luck. Students’ success as learners would advance if they had a larger repertoire of study strategies, if they could match study strategies with learning tasks, and if they constructively confronted how they studied with how they performed. Students need help on all three fronts, but courses are already packed with content. Most teachers have time to do little more than admonish students to study hard, avoid cramming and memorizing minutia, and abstain from any sort of cheating. Here is a short survey to administer to your students and how to start a short discussion on “How to study for this exam."