Working toward your Master’s degree in Athletic training is undoubtedly an exciting time of your life. Of course, this unique time comes with its own share of responsibilities as well. You’ll have to manage your finances, make sure you’re getting enough sleep, eating well, maintaining relationships, and above everything keep your goal in sight, which is to study hard for your classes and the BOC exam and get as much hands-on experience as possible.
There’s a lot to do in a short period of time, so it’s not easy. It’s hard to cook, clean your house, do your laundry, complete assignments, attend classes and practices, and study between all that.
In order to help you survive this phase of your life and get the grades you need for a good career, here are a few mistakes you should avoid. The more you notice and fix these mistakes, the better your grades and study habits for the BOC exam will be.
Studying for a Long Time
The most common misconception is that you learn and remember more when you study for a long time. Some people even study at night when others are sleeping because they believe it makes them more productive. However, research shows that’s not true.
Your brain loses its ability to learn and grasp what you read when you study for too long. You should take short breaks between studying sessions so your brain gets refreshed. Professional athletes train this way. Ever seen an athlete train 24/7? No way. They work hard, but they also have rest days so their bodies can relax and recuperate. It’s the same with studying.
Let’s take a look at the physiological reasons why it’s necessary. Using the same neurons over and over makes them weak, just like how muscles get worn out over time. By taking small breaks, your neurons become stronger and can help you retain what you study for longer. That’s why you shouldn’t study too hard all the time. Instead, take small breaks between study sessions and do other things, so your brain and neurons are refreshed.
It’s important to know what rest is. It doesn’t have to be mindless TV binges, it can be a quick cardio exercise, a power nap, or even a walk around the block.
Memorizing Over Understanding
Let’s be honest – many concepts seem overwhelming, so we either skip them altogether or try to memorize them instead of understanding them. You’ll get lower scores with either of these choices. In fact, the former option is better than the latter option simply because you get to save some extra time and energy, as both these choices will lead to the same results for you.
The problem with memorizing is that you don’t know what you’ve learned. You can forget a lesson or answer you memorized if you don’t understand what it means. Taking extra time or taking extra help to understand these tough concepts will help you remember them during the BOC exam.
Fear of Seeking Help
The reason we cram down lessons or don’t remember what we study is that we don’t understand what’s being said. Every student needs help at some point and no one is super-human.
Students tend to avoid getting help simply because they’re afraid of asking. What will other people think? Are they going to think I’m dumb and can’t understand such simple stuff? Is there anyone who can help me? You can’t study or do well on exams when you have questions like these.
Start by understanding that we all have our own weaknesses. Others are great at math, while others are great at science. It’s pretty common to ask for help from others because no one is perfect at everything. Even if someone does judge you when you take help, just ignore them because, at the end of the day, your grades and score on the BOC will speak for themselves about your ability to learn and perform.
The next question is, where can you get help? You can reach out to your professors, clinical preceptors, and trusted classmates. You can also utilize the community forum on ATStudy Buddy if you’re a member, which allows you to ask questions from other students and professors around the country.
Relying on Your Notes
Another mistake is relying too much on your notes. It’s not good to rely on only these notes even though you’ve spent hours writing them down. Before the BOC exam, you can scan the important points, but be sure to scan through your textbooks or use the pre-made outlines in ATStudy Buddy to make sure you’ve covered everything in depth. Additionally, if you read only your notes, you’re going over the same information over and over again without covering all the necessary information to answer all the questions.