Cramming Vs. Periodic Studying Essay

1017 words - 5 pages

One of the most stressful aspects of high school and ultimately college is the ability (or lack thereof) to form good study habits. One may often hear the dramatic tale of a college student staying up all night in order to receive a good grade on his or her test the following morning. This student either completely fails the test, or does really well. These results depend on the students themselves and their ability to study in this manner. In this essay, I will compare and contrast fellow two of the most popular forms of studying—periodic and cramming—in an effort to allow high school students to effectively choose which form may best work for them.
First, it is important to look at the amount of time each habit takes on average. Looking in a long-term viewpoint, studying periodically takes much more time than cramming. Although it may seem as if the opposite is true, cramming is fairly speedy. Before a test, a student may spend two or three hours studying for a history exam. A student who decides to study periodically may study for thirty minutes each night starting two weeks before the exam takes place. That adds up to seven hours, more than double the time it takes to cram for the test! One may argue that by studying a little bit each night, you could study ten or even five minutes a day, but that’s not particularly effective. In a mere ten minutes, it is nearly impossible to cover the needed information. By cramming, one is able to effectively fit two weeks of information in a shorter amount of time. If you participate in several extracurricular activities and/or have a job, it may be very difficult for you to make room for studying and homework each night. By cramming, you are limiting this time to one day rather than every single day, therefore cutting down on stress. However, if you do not participate in many activities after school, you could strongly benefit by studying periodically. It would only take an extra half an hour or less out of your day, and you would potentially be able to learn new information. In this case, it just depends on the student to decide which method is more useful.
Another important factor in choosing the best study habit for you is your short term well-being. Because cramming takes up such a long time and usually occurs at the end of the day, it can negatively affect sleep whereas studying periodically takes hardly takes any time, unless you participate in any extracurricular activities. Sometimes cramming can also cause a student to stress out, while periodic studying is relatively stress-free. For example, problems could emerge if the student happens to have multiple tests on the same day or has a heavier amount of homework than they normally do. By studying each night for a short amount of time, sleep is barely affected if at all. A student may have a calculus and a history test on the...

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