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Study Skills Strategies to Improve Student Performance

Study Skills Strategies to Improve Student Performance

Initial Thoughts

  1. Is it the responsibility of teachers to teach study skills strategies? Explain your response.
  • I believe that it is the teacher’s responsibility to teach study skills strategies. First and foremost, when students harbor study skills, teachers would spend less time re-teaching certain content because students did not grasp the content in the beginning.  Study skills strategies refer to things individuals have to do when they need to locate and remember information. For example, being organized is a study skill that should be taught. It is pertinent for teachers to understand that the majority of organization methods do not work for all students, therefore, teachers’ must teach different organizational strategies. When students are organized, they will allocate information quicker, coupled with, teachers teaching memorization strategies. Memorization skills consist of forms of repeating or re-writing the information or using flashcards. Looking at long pages of information or notes will not help students retain any information. Finally, every student needs to be taught note-taking strategies. Not only should teachers teach the importance of note-taking, but they should teach various strategies. For example, if a student is taught to review notes periodically, they would be able to reiterate what they’ve learned, plus, it will give them the opportunity to retain any information they’ve missed the first time. If students are taught study skills strategies, they will be able to use the information effectively. In addition, students with executive functions deficits would succeed academically if they are explicitly taught how to approach academic tasks. That being said, every teacher should devote their time to help students learn how to study.
  1. Which study skills strategies can improve students’ academic performance?
  • There are several study skills strategies that can improve a student’s academic performance. Some study skills strategies consist of graphic organizers, comprehension strategies, mnemonic strategies, note-taking strategies, organization strategies, time management, and self-regulation. First and foremost, graphic organizers help students organize information, compare the relationship between ideas, and apply information. In addition, graphic organizers help students make connections to what they already know. Comprehension strategies help students identify relevant information within a text and make connections to prior knowledge. This is important because students who have learning difficulties often experience challenges in processing information, as a result, it will affect their ability to understand the text. Mnemonic strategies are known as memory strategies. Mnemonic strategies utilize visual or auditory clues to help students make connections to what they know and new information. Note-taking strategies help students understand information that is presented in books and lectures, it helps students process important information, and keep them engaged with the material. Organization strategies can improve student’s academic performance by helping them stay on-task, prepared, and efficient, whereas, students who are not organized will most likely face academic challenges. For example, if a student records their next assignment on a piece of paper and accidentally throw it away, the student will be at risk of failing that assignment due to unpreparedness. Time management strategies help students gain a sense of how long an assignment might take. Without it, students will overestimate or underestimate the time needed to complete a task. Last but not least, self-regulation strategies help students use learning strategies. For instance, students will be able to grasp the idea of knowing when to use a certain strategy. The four self-regulation strategies are self-monitoring, keeping track of progress; self-instruction, students create encouraging statements through a task or activity; goal setting establishes achievable objectives for learning; and self-reinforcement, students uses intrinsic rewards when something has been completed.


  1. Because students with learning difficulties often have deficits in executive functions, they are at risk of academic failure.
    1. List four critical activities related to learning that might be affected by these deficits.
  • In this day and age, students are expected to read independently and extract information from textbooks, complete assignments with multi-steps, and use appropriate study strategies. This is due to increasing expectations and difficult content, however, students with learning difficulties and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder are at risk of failing than are their peers without disabilities. One major reason why students struggle is because they have deficits in executive functions. Executive functions are the mental processes that regulate and coordinate activities related to learning, including processing information, retaining and recalling information, organizing materials and time, and using effective learning and study strategies. If students learn how to gain and use information effectively, then students who have executive function deficits need to be explicitly taught how to approach academic tasks strategically. Therefore, they need to be taught effective study skills. Individual strategies can be implemented to address problems students might have with four critical activities associated with learning. The four processes include processing information, retaining and recalling information, organizing materials and managing time, and selecting, monitoring and using strategies.
    1. For each of these activities, identify at least one study skills strategy that might help these students to improve their academic performance.
  • If students learn how to gain and use information effectively, then students who have executive function deficits need to be explicitly taught how to approach academic tasks strategically. Therefore, they need to be taught effective study skills. Individual strategies can be implemented to address problems students might have with four critical activities associated with learning. Activities related to learning consist of processing information, retaining and recalling information, organizing materials and managing time, and selecting, monitoring and using strategies.

     First, processing information study skills strategy requires the use of graphic organizers. There are several graphic organizers that serve different purposes. For example, to address the cause and effect, the fishbone diagram and problem and solution map are the perfect organizer. In addition, the web graphic organizer helps students with classifying; the Venn diagram helps students compare and contrast; the word web is used for describing, and the flowchart cycle is used for sequencing. Second, retaining and recalling information requires note-taking strategies. There are several note-taking study skills strategies such as guided notes, strategic note taking, AWARE notes, and columnar formats. Guided notes help students guide through lectures. Teachers provide outlines that contain the main idea and related concepts. In addition, as information is presented, students can fill in the missing content into blanks where key facts should be. Strategic note-taking help students take good notes. For instance, it helps students summarize and organize key points. A.W.A.R.E note staking strategy helps students record lectures and take notes. This strategy is arranged into five steps. A-Arrange notes, W-Write quickly, A-Apply cues, R-Review notes, E-Edit notes.   

     Third, organizing materials and managing time requires time management study strategy skills. Time management study skills help students manage their time efficiently. For instance, it teaches students how to estimate their time, schedule time, and monitor their schedule. Estimating time helps students estimate how long it will take to complete a task. Schedule time helps schedule their time by using timelines. This approach will give students a better idea of when to start an assignment or project. Monitoring schedule allows students to create a checklist to monitor what tasks have been completed. Lastly, selecting, monitoring and using strategies requires four self-regulation study strategy skills. Self-monitoring, self-instruction, goal setting, and self-reinforcement are used to help students apply cognitive strategies and how to determine if they are successful.

  1. Name four self-regulation strategies and describe how each can help a student become a more independent learner.
  • Majority of students with learning difficulties and learning disabilities need strategies that will help them stay on track. Teaching self-regulation strategies foster students to be actively involved in their own learning. For instance, instead of teachers being responsible for monitoring students academic progress, the students will be responsible for monitoring their progress on their own. In addition, self-regulation strategies help students select and monitor learning strategies. Students who are capable of using learning strategies effectively, know where and why to use a particular strategy, whereas, students who do not possess the same opportunities have difficulties with academic strategies. For instance, students will use ineffective strategies for all academic tasks. In order to be successful, students must be responsible for their own learning. To do so, students must adopt self-regulation strategies. The four self-regulation strategies are self-monitoring, self instruction, goal setting, and self-reinforcement.

Self-monitoring strategies provide immediate feedback to students, depicts improvement, and enable students to be aware of their behavior. There are several ways students can monitor their progress. Students can monitor their progress by using checklists, self-monitoring sheets, and self-monitoring log. For example, a self-monitoring checklist can be utilized for editing assignments. But, if a student is having difficulties completing tasks such as submitting homework, they can use checklists that aims towards specific behavior. Self-instruction strategies are when students use encouraging statements that will help them cope through different situations. Some situations are working through a task, coping with a difficult situation, and rewarding themselves. Goal-setting strategies help students establish goals and increase student’s attention and motivation. Short term goals are considered Students who have difficulty completing tasks on time. Teachers can help students establish short-term goals. When setting goals, students should identify goals, develop and implement plans, and revise goals. Self-reinforcement occurs when individuals choose reinforcements and rewards for reaching or exceeding a goal. Goal-setting are beneficial for students because it produces improvement in performance, and engages students in their learning.

  1. Imagine that you are a middle school social studies teacher. A number of your students are struggling with basic study skills. You want to help all of your students to become more effective learners.
    1. Choose a graphic organizer to help your students more easily see the relationship between election processes in the early 1900s and today. Explain why you chose this type of graphic organizer.
  • The graphic organizer that will help students see the relationship between election processes in the early 1900s and today would be a Venn diagram. A Venn diagram is an organizer that is used to show the overlapping relationship between different categories, as well as, what is unique to each. Some categories are events, things, and ideas. For example, students will write how the two subjects are different in the outer circles, and write how they are alike in the overlapping areas. For example, once students complete the Venn diagram, they will see that the relationship between the election process in the early 1900s and today is that elections are held on November 6 and have Democratic and Republican parties.
    1. Select one note-taking strategy to help your students to take effective notes to study for a test. Explain why you chose this strategy.
  • The strategic note-taking strategy will help students take effective notes to study for a test, coupled with the CUES strategy. First and foremost, strategic note-taking allows students to record notes by clustering the main points and summarizing each point during a lecture. Clustering ideas help students remember the information and summarizing aids them in monitoring comprehension and storing information in their long-term memory. While teaching students how to effectively use strategic note-taking strategies, teachers could implement the CUES strategy. The C (Cluster) students will divide content relating to the content that is being presented. U (Use) is steps that are used by students while recording points from a lecture. Students will use teacher cues to help them discern important information. in addition, students should be attentive to number cues. For example, “There are six types of…” and important cues “This strategy is important because…”., E (Enter) students would be reminded to enter key terms, and the S (summarize) students will summarize lecture points.
    1. You want to introduce a mnemonic strategy to help your students learn the first ten elements in the periodic chart. Select the type of mnemonic strategy (or combination of strategies) you would use for this task and explain why you chose it. Show how you would apply this strategy for teaching the first ten elements of the periodic chart.
  • Science, engineering, and math classes can be challenging and require a lot of time to study the formulas and concepts. But, once students become familiar with them, they will be successful in the classroom. One method for remembering a large amount of information is the use of mnemonics. Also, it is effective in different grade levels, content areas, and different settings. The 1st letter strategy mnemonic strategy will be used to help students learn the first ten elements in the periodic chart. The 1st letter strategy helps students remember information. In addition, this mnemonic strategy instruction is effective with students with learning disabilities. The two methods of teaching the 1st letter strategy are acronyms and acrostic. An acronym is a word whose individual letter represents the first letter of each word, whereas, an acrostic is a phrase that uses the first letter of each word that represents the first letter of information. In light of this case, the acrostic strategy is most effective. The acrostic strategy is beneficial for students because it helps them recall lists of information. For example, Science: The elements of the periodic table (H-hydrogen, HE-Helium, LI-Lithium, BE-Beryllium, B-Boron, C-Carbon, N-Nitrogen, O-Oxygen, F-Fluorine, and N-Neon). Honey, Helps, Little, Bees, Bring, Countless, Nibbles, Of, Fun, Nicely. This mnemonic strategy will help students memorize the names, symbols and the positions of the elements of the periodic table.
    1. Imagine that you are a high school teacher. You have noticed that several of your students have difficulty completing their homework on time. One strategy that might be helpful for these students is A-WATCH. Using what you have learned in this module, explain why this strategy might be effective.
  • The acronym A-WATCH stands for, A- Assignment notebook, W-write down the assignment and due date, A- ask for clarification on the assignment, T-task-analyze the assignment, C-check work for errors, accuracy, and neatness, H- hand in the assignment. The A-WATCH strategy might be an effective strategy because it can be considered a self-management strategy. For instance, this strategy can be proven effective for students with learning disabilities who have difficulty completing tasks individually. Also, the A-WTCH strategy will teach students with learning disabilities self-instruction, how to achieve and set goals, and evaluate their work. Students are more likely to become successful in completing long-term assignments if they organize how they will approach them and plan accordingly. In addition, this strategy can help student’s complete assignments efficiently, especially long-term assignments. Long-term assignments are typically due in several days or weeks and include projects and book reports. The A-WATCH strategy can be used to help student’s complete academic assignments accurately by helping them plan and organize their assignments.

Wrap up

Students with learning disabilities struggle academically. One main reason why students struggle is due to deficits in executive functions, the mental processes that control activities related to learning. The activities that are related to learning are Processing information, Retaining and Recalling Information, Organizing Materials and Time, and Using Effective Learning and Study Strategies. Due to the deficits in executive function processes, it is imperative that students should be taught explicitly how to approach academic tasks. In addition, students need to be taught study strategy skills. There are several study skills strategies that can help students who struggle with executive functions or activities related to learning. When it comes to Processing Information, students can use graphic organizers. Graphic organizers help students process information easily. Retaining and Recalling Information, a note-taking study strategy skill helps students understand information that is presented, organize information and become actively engaged with the content. In addition, mnemonics is another study strategy skill that corresponds with retaining and recalling information. Mnemonic strategies are presented in the form of visual and auditory clues that help students make meaningful connections between prior knowledge and new information. Organizing Materials and managing time consists of the organization of materials and time management. Organizing materials keep students organized. For example, being organized help students keep their personal belongings such as their desks, lockers, and book bags. Practicing this skill will foster success and reduce frustration. Time-management is important because it helps students manage their time effectively. In addition, it helps students estimate time, schedule time, and monitor schedules. Last but not least, Selecting, Monitoring, and Using Strategies consist of self-regulation study strategies. Self-regulation strategies help students to utilize learning strategies. There are four self-regulation strategies that will help students become an active member of their learning such as self-monitoring, self-instruction, goal-setting, and self-reinforcement. Each of these strategies can be used separately or together. For example, if a student is not making adequate progress, she could ask herself why and talk herself through the problem. Therefore, it is important to teach study strategy skills strategies to students, especially to students with learning disabilities.


  • Study Skills Strategies (Part 2): Strategies that Improve Students’ Academic Performance. (n.d.). Retrieved from

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