Writing About Writing (Literally)

Being a communications major, I don’t do a whole lot of scientific learning. That is until this year when I decided to take Biology of Sex to fulfill my LSA¬† natural science credits. I thought the class would be fun–bi-weekly sex talks! Sadly, the kind of learning we’ve done thus far doesn’t meet my expectations about the interesting, exciting topic of sex. The lecture is in the lead for my most boring class at UofM. And the worst part is that the professor puts entire paragraphs on the lecture slides, and doesn’t post the slides until after the class.

You may be wondering how this relates to writing…

Well, I have to memorize these BORING concepts somehow so I decided to revert to an old study strategy: flashcards. Some of you are probably regulars when it comes to making flashcards, but I have hardly made any flashcards while in college. I began going through the slides and making flashcards for all of the main vocabulary/ideas when I realized writing out flashcards might actually be a pretty effective study strategy. I wrote the concepts in pink pen (to add some excitement to the boring scientific explanation of mitosis and the like).

Why do I think flashcards are an effective study strategy?

We are almost always writing during exams, not typing on our can’tlivewithout laptops. Even if the exam is scantron, we are still technically “writing”. I think writing out key concepts on flashcards might be advantageous to simply reading powerpoint slides or typing up study guides. Typing might be a more effective study strategy if we were allowed to take our exams on laptops, but since this is not how things work in college (yet, anyways) I’ll stick to my opinion and favorability for the flashcard technique.

What do you think? Have you ever considered the similarity/differences between study tactics and actual exams?


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