Effective Learning, does it help?
What is effective learning? It’s observed that toppers generally don’t study that many number of hours than others. What is different between them and others who study as much or even more than them? Is our obsession with the question “How many hours did you study?” correct? Or there’s something more to that?
It’s all about effective learning and applying it simultaneously. Students just passing out of 10th or even before that have a general notion that they may have to sit for 10-12 hours to crack exams like JEE, NEET, etc. Half of them get demotivated here itself and the remaining think that if they put in huge efforts, they will surely perform well. But very few succeed, why? There are many who put in great quantity of effort, but compromise its quality! What we should do is learn from this, and make a strong belief that quality should be given preference over quality. This is a fundamental of life in general, give quality preference over quantity. If you learn effectively you save a lot of time. I personally didn’t study more than 6 hours on an average for JEE and thus had some time for reading, sports and other things which matter as much as studying. Most students complain that they go blank when they appear for an exam, why does it happen so? It’s because majorly people have just normally read their text, have no plan of action, not enough practice, or even if they have, it’s irrelevant. Thus to avoid such blunders, we can rely solely on effective learning. A friend of mine who cracked AIR 10 in AIIMS had almost read the whole of Campbell text which is huge (about 1000 pages). He understood all the concepts it taught on every page, which would have been easily forgotten if the learning wouldn't have been effective. One of the widely used books for physics, Wiley Publication’s Halliday / Resnick / Walker uses effective learning techniques if solved and understood page by page. Any student can understand concepts easily and retain its concepts till the end, and hence is a widely used book by toppers.
The conclusion of what I want to say is that effective learning can be practiced and it should be practiced. There are many methods such as memory maps, concept maps which you can invoke in your day to day studying. Always aim to make your study more effective from the day before and achieve what you desire!
About the author
Nikhil Gawade is B.Tech, Mechanical Engineering undergraduate student at Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. He secured an All India Rank 311 in JEE advanced 2015. His academic achievement includes place among top 300 students selected for Indian National Chemistry Olympiad, rank in top 1% at Indian National Physics Olympiad conducted by IAPT , Kishore Vaigyanik Protsahan Yojana Scholarship  with an All India Rank 335, silver medal at Homi Bhabha Young Scientist Exam. He had also cleared Indian National Physics and Chemistry Olympiads and KVPY. Nikhil is also an athlete and is proficient in playing Flute & Keyboard.