Regain focus while studying, because it will only burn you out in the end. College students’ attention spans are substantially declining after the effects of COVID and the rise of social media platforms with 10-60 second videos as content. There is no question that students today have the world’s answers at their fingertips, but with this potential knowledge comes a potential distraction.
While phones may be the root of this distraction, studies show that students may experience a lack of focus due to overcompensating during their study time. Or in other words, cramming until the last minute for a test or studying for an extended consecutive amount of time with no breaks can be detrimental to the student’s focus and the overall quality of their work.
So how does a student regain focus through a productive study break?
Lists, Organization, & Breaks To Regain Focus
When speaking with a professional tutor and teacher Gerron Lewis, an electrical engineering major at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, Lewis touched on his experiences with studying, the importance of lists, organization, and breaks on both sides of education.
As a student, Lewis says, “It starts with a plan. It starts with a list. I’ll start a new list of stuff I need to do out of nowhere.”
Gerron says that he loses the most focus on an assignment or study session when he is worried about all the other things he has to do during the day and doesn’t plan.
Along with his studies, Lewis is an after-school teacher at FAMU Developmental Research School and a tutor at the Jackson Davis math center on FAMU’S campus.
He states that he takes the same organizational planning approach when working with students. When asked what the best study-to-work ratio was for his students, Lewis said, “The best thing to do is to work on the subject in bursts of productive time, then I give my student ten to fifteen-minute breaks to make sure they can recharge. I make them set a timer on their phone since that is our biggest distraction. When the timer goes off, they can check their phone”.