Three students revising and taking notes
Three students revising and taking notes

Six tips for studying effectively

Now you're all settled into the new term, here are a few ways to take the stress out of studying:

Create a study plan

A study plan is a great way to help motivate you to study. How you choose to create one is up to you. You might want to add calendar reminders to your phone or even use a wall planner. More information on how to create a study plan can be found on the Oxford Students website. There is also a short video on the website about how to manage your time.

Develop a more strategic approach to note-taking

It’s helpful to develop a more strategic approach to note-taking. Remember to include full citation details for your sources and ensure that you note down the page number of each argument or quote you select. Confine yourself to the main points, and summarise arguments in your own words as this helps you to understand them. For more information and a video on note-taking, visit the Oxford Students website.


Did you know that stress has a negative impact on our ability to store information? If your mood is low or you’re feeling under pressure, a range of wellbeing workshops are available to help you build skills to respond to the demands of life at university. Topics during Michaelmas term include anxiety management, perfectionism, sleep difficulties and insomnia, relaxation, overcoming panic, finding your voice and mindfulness. If you can’t make a workshop, there are various helpful podcasts on the Oxford Students website, to help you cope better with university life.

Get active

It’s no secret that exercise is good for long term health, but did you know that it can actually have short term benefits and improve our ability to concentrate? You can find out more about the benefits of physical activity when it comes to learning by watching the #ActiveatOxford video.

Avoid ‘essay mills’

There has been recent media attention on professional agencies that offer essay writing services, or ‘essay mills’. Use of these services is strictly prohibited and directly contravenes the University’s disciplinary policy. If you're found to be using professional writing services - or passing off other people’s work as yours - you will face serious disciplinary action. Using these services will also hinder your academic development. If you are struggling with your workload or writing, speak with your tutor in the first instance. You can also find a range of resources about study skills and avoiding plagiarism on the Oxford Students’ website.

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