5 Study Strategies for Acing Biology
5 Study Strategies for Acing Biology
Biology is tough! Whether you’re cramming for your final test tomorrow, feeling overwhelmed by new material, or grounded because of your biology grade, your friends at AdaMarie have got you covered. Although you may feel stuck now, we know you’ll be acing your class in no time with some helpful study tips. Keep reading for five of our best tips for acing biology!
#1. Create Flashcards
Before rolling your eyes at another mention of this old-school study method, hear us out. Physical flash cards work great if you’re someone who needs hands-on learning, and an online resource like Quizlet is ideal if you are always on your computer and want to save some trees.
You may be sitting here thinking so, what do I even write/type onto these little white pieces of paper? Flashcards are a helpful method for concepts you need to memorize, such as the definitions for vocabulary words. Write the word or concept on one side, and the definition on the other. To take it one step further, you can use flashcards to write questions based on main points you need to know. For example, write “What makes up an ecosystem?” instead of simply writing “Ecosystem”.
#2. Talk It Out
Are you that person who nods along in class but then you sit down to take the quiz/test and completely blank on the answers? If so, this study method is perfect for you. Talking out loud about the content helps you not only to understand the information but also to comprehend it well enough to put the concepts into your own words. This ensures that you have truly memorized the information.
This is especially helpful when you’re learning a complex process involving many steps, as those can often feel overwhelming and impossible to memorize. However, you’ll be surprised how quickly you will memorize concepts when you put the textbook down and say the concepts out loud, even if it’s just to yourself!
#3. Work with Diagrams to Practice Labeling
If you’re a visual learner, this one's for you! Biology involves a lot of tangible ideas that can be drawn out (literally) to help enhance learning. If you’re feeling artsy, try drawing your own version of the concept you need to learn and labeling it without looking at your notes. If this is difficult, identify which visual aspects you are struggling to remember and study these a little more. Repeat this process until you can perfectly label the diagram!
If that’s not your vibe, Google Images is your friend. Search for the concept or image that you need to memorize, such as the layout of the heart or the inside of the cell, and find a blank diagram to print out. Print off a few copies so you can practice labeling it multiple times until you get it right!
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#4. Practice, Practice, Practice
Repetition is truly the key for memorizing terms in biology. This involves not only crushing it during the in-class Kahoot practice activity, but also being prepared for the anxiety-provoking task of answering quiz/test questions. To get you in that test-day mindset, look for practice questions posted by your teacher, included in your textbook, or found in a reliable online source.
If you have resources provided by your teacher/professor or located in your textbook, make sure you ask your instructor for the correct answers. If you’re using outside resources, make sure you’re using a resource that includes the answer key so that you can check your work. Not finding any pre-prepared materials? Don’t sweat! It might be even better practice to create your own questions based off of your study guide and randomly quiz yourself.
#5. Make Personal Connections
Do you ever leave your biology class and suddenly see the world through a more scientific lens? Like suddenly the clouds look puffier or you can feel every little muscle in your hand for the first time?
Let’s use this curiosity to your advantage! To do this, identify examples from your life for the topics you’re studying. This helps you take your learning one step forward by applying seemingly abstract concepts to the everyday things you’re familiar with. While this may feel silly at first, you’ll soon be studying as you do everything from making coffee in the morning to going to the gym in the afternoon. Just be advised, you may actually find biology class interesting after utilizing this study method!
Success is in your DNA!
We hope that you’re feeling ready to dive into studying, so you can rock your upcoming quiz or test. Before you put on your lo-fi music and get your note cards out, don’t forget to check out our STEM-inspired jewelry collection -- treat yourself for all the hours you’re about to spend studying!