Reading the slides
So hopefully thus far, you have had a chance to start reading the PowerPoint Slides I have prepared. On purpose, I have numbered each lesson and broken down the lessons into 5 main topics. There is a way you should be reading the slides to get the absolute MAXIMUM out of your studying.
Firstly, as you study use a notepad or write notes digitally etc. Also, try to put my material in your words. By doing this you are dissecting this material as your own, meaning your brain is more likely to recall it. I would advise drawing a mind map and then links to the important pieces of information from each lesson.
As you progress you will notice how certain lessons overlap and link. Furthermore, you should have a separate page/diagram for showing links between topics. It’s important when you approach a question to understand the potential overlap between topics. A common issue is when a student sees a question appearing familiar, yet they are uncertain how to solve it since there are usually multiple concepts behind it. To avoid this look for links between topics and lessons. Thus, you will be able to answer more questions.
Useful do’s and don’ts
I have attempted to put as many questions as possible in the slides so that you can apply your knowledge immediately, according to UCSD retrieval practice meaning recalling the information you have learnt practically such as in questions is one of the MOST effective revision strategies. That’s why try to genuinely solve these questions as well as the end of topic questions I have designed. Getting an answer wrong legitimately can be more valuable than actually getting the answer right but using many aids to do so.
Please NEVER try to reading the slides casually, meaning with music playing or doing other tasks. I used to do this but found it highly ineffective, since your brain is more likely to confuse information, altogether not learning what you planned to learn. Instead, allocate some time to the other tasks you want to do, and also allocate some time where it is just PURE revision time. 30 minutes of pure revision time is better than 2 hours of study with 50% concentration.
A key mistake when reading the slides is that students ask questions prior to reading the information. It is surprising how much your brain can understand if you spend a few minutes re-reading and trying to wrap your mind behind a concept. Asking questions is really important, but they should only be asked after you have done everything you can to understand. In this scenario, asking questions becomes highly beneficial.
Critically, understand the most important ideas, formulas and the ways of solving problems rather than dwelling on general slides explaining certain things. Meaning, once you have understood my explanations and examples skip revising them and try using the knowledge to solve questions. Your time is valuable, so try not to use it in areas which you feel you know already. However, it can be useful to reclarify if you truly know it or not.