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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SJSU chapter.

Do you have a really important midterm coming up? Or maybe a project that’s worth 25% of your grade? If you’re anything like me, I dread the idea of studying. Reading a textbook, doing flashcards, watching examples on YouTube? Hard pass.

In order for your grades to flourish however, studying is a must. I’ve put together some tips and tricks that helped improve my study habits immensely, and I strongly believe this could put you en route to earning that 4.0!

Step One: Find A Study Spot

This is a very crucial element within formulating your studying habitat, as many suggest studying in public places actually helps improve efficiency.  I didn’t believe it much at first, until I went to the library one night to get some work done. I came out a changed student, my work ethic and time management improved tremendously once I made it a point to regularly go to the library to do my homework. There were times that I’d be in there for hours, completely losing track of time. As someone who procrastinates, it genuinely helped me get things done in an efficient amount of time.

Step Two: Go With A Group

This may not be the case for some people, but I always find that I get more work done when I’m with my friends. It could be 1-2 people, or more! It is purely based upon preference! Being surrounded by a group setting can motivate you to be more productive, especially if everyone else around you is matching that energy..

Step Three: Set The Mood With Some Good Tunes

Everyone’s music taste is different, so what you choose to listen to will vary. This is why I bring my headphones with me when I’m going to study. Personally, listening to my normal or everyday playlist is pretty distracting. I get caught up in the song, but who can blame me?

It is important to find a genre of music that is specifically for studying. Your brain will begin to associate this music with productivity, which will automatically help you focus more. I like to listen to Bossa Nova when I’m doing homework, and it’s crazy how my brain can switch into work mode so quickly when I have it playing. I’ve also listened to lofi, classical, and jazz, you can’t go wrong with any of them!

Step Four: Stay Off Your Phone

Of course, this goes without saying. You can’t exactly study well if you’re distracted by your phone. I get it, I’ve been there. You hear the buzz go off and your first instinct is to pick up the phone, like a moth to a flame. I struggled to stay off of my phone when doing homework for the longest time, but have recently found a way to do so!

If you’re an iPhone user, the trick is to set your phone to “Do Not Disturb.”This will prevent you from  seeing or hearing any incoming notifications or calls. Proceed to go to the Camera app and start recording a  “timelapse,” and set your phone up so that you’re in frame!

I love watching timelapse videos, and recording myself studying further encourages me to keep going. Especially since any distractions would ruin the consistency and flow of the video.  I’ve recorded time lapses that have lasted hours, some that even capture the sunset in the background! It’s a fun way to avoid getting distracted while getting a cool new video out of it.

Step Five: Stay Hydrated

You definitely want to stay hydrated while studying, especially if you’re going to the library or some other spot. Bring a couple snacks to munch on if you decide to take a break too! My go-to choice of snacks are Mott’s fruit gummies or mini M&M’s, something small and easy.

Incorporating these methods into how I approach focusing on schoolwork has seriously improved the way I study, and how I am as a student in general. Hopefully, these could be of use to those who share similar struggles!

Let us know if these tips helped you improve your study habits, @HerCampusSJSU!

Isabella Alvarez is a member of HerCampus at SJSU. She's in her first year as a journalism major, hoping to pursue a career as an investigative journalist! She worked a blue-collar job during high school as a hostess, a year at California Pizza Kitchen, and another year at Oasis. She also volunteered at various organizations to help the community during this time. During her senior year of high school, she also created a club that gained lots of attention from the student body and various participants during meetings with students. During her free time, she enjoys listening to music on Spotify; whether it's jazz music to the most recent rap song dropped by Uzi, as long as it's good then she listens to it! She loves concerts and has seen her favorite artist, Tyler the Creator, as well as Kali Uchis, Joji, and small artist Rocco. Before graduating, she played soccer for a club and her high school team… unfortunately, she was forced to hang up her cleats due to an injury. Playing video games is another fun hobby that she has, but has loads of a better time if she does it with friends. This goes for other fun activities as well! If she has someone to hang out with, she's down for anything!