How to learn

Learning is more of an art than it first seems.

It is a largely active process that requires some effort.

We are all different and therefore have different ways of interpreting information that is presented to us.  Some of us prefer to listen, some to watch, some to do, and others prefer to read and write.  In reality, we learn through a combination of each of these.

To maximise our learning experience, it helps to understand how best your brain receives and interprets information.

We recommend taking some time to complete the free VARK questionnaire found at


Top tips for learning

  • Take care of yourself.  Eat healthily.  Drink plenty of water.  Take regular exercise.  Get plenty of sleep.

  • Plan a timetable.  Document when you will work, and when you will rest.  Use the timetable and rest guilt-free.

  • Learn regularly.  Expect to do at least 6 hours of book work regularly per week.  Reading is not learning,  it’s just reading…

  • Structure your learning like a story.  Ask your teacher for a copy of the course syllabus.  Use this as a script of what you need to learn.  Start at the very beginning.  Understand the basics, then build complexity around that.

  • Do mind experiments.  Think about what you have read, written, heard, or done.  Consider how this might apply to real-life situations.

  • Test yourself.  Rewrite what you have learned.  Apply this to past exam papers.  Don’t waste your time on things you are already good at.  It might make you feel good, but it won’t improve your grades.