Updated: Mar 15
Early last year, a student from East New York got accepted into 11 medical schools! After some consideration, Chelsea Batista accepted a full 4-year scholarship including room and board at Columbia University. She was aiming to get into just one medical school, but was surprised to receive 11 acceptance letters! With such amazing results, there is no doubt that Chelsea has some great study tips to share! Here are 5 study tips that Chelsea shared with Pix11 News:
Do your homework, even when you don’t want to
Chelsea explains that “Homework is never fun, but sometimes it’s the only way I’ll study”. She explains that especially in uninteresting courses, putting a lot of effort into homework is an easy way to apply your knowledge and help you study best!
Homework is a great way to apply the concepts that you learn in class. You have to do it anyway, so why not put a lot of effort into it and really understand what you are expected to learn? You’ll get your homework done and be prepared for any upcoming tests as well!
To help you out with planning and keeping track of homework and assignments, here are two apps that you might find useful:
iStudiez Pro ($4.49) (Free version also available)
Pocket Schedule Planner (Free)
If the methods used in class don’t work, find new methods
Chelsea says that she visual and tactile learner. She remembers things best when she handwrites her notes and uses colour coding to associate different content with different subjects.
If you follow your teacher’s advice on how to study and can’t seem to understand the work, switch up your study methods! If your teacher likes to use mind maps group work to teach concepts, that doesn’t mean you have to! Some students will love using that study method and for others it just won’t work.
Figure out when your ideal time to study is, establish a pattern of always studying at that time
Chelsea claims that this habit has helped her get ahead in class- “I’m a morning person. The earlier I’m up the more things I get done”. She uses her time to plan her week, study and complete assignments.
Some people aren’t like Chelsea and prefer to study later in the afternoon or night. Find the time that works for you and make it a habit to study in that time.This doesn’t mean that you have to study every day- you also need some time to relax! Making a study timetable can also help you to develop this habit – check out the end of this article for tips on how to set up a timetable you’ll actually follow.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
According to Chelsea, she is never afraid to ask questions. She “doesn’t mind sounding dumb for asking” because she knows that she’ll know the answer to the question after she asks. She says that it is much more important to ask the question and know the answer later when it matters than not asking the question at all.
I’m sure that we have all felt stupid when asking a question in class. We worry about what our peers and teacher will think of us- but your teacher is there to answer your questions. It is literally their job. You’re paying them to be there. As for your friends- they’ll be confused when you ace that upcoming test and they all struggled.
If you’re very unsure about your question, try Googling it first!
Take advantage of the resources you have
“My professors are resources I treasure” says Chelsea. She says that her teachers helped her by providing guidance, career advice and pro tips on how to do well in the courses. She says that she became a familiar face in their offices and even got some letters of recommendation from a few of them for medical school.
If you think that your teachers can help you with your work outside of class, set up a meeting time with them and have questions or discussions prepared. Ask them if they have any specific advice for the class they teach or any additional resources that will help you succeed. Chances are they’ll be happy to help out a student willing and motivated enough to ask them!
View Chelsea’s full video interview here.