Organization key to unlocking academic success

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Nicole Marcinkus, Local Editor

Getting back to school requires a lot of supplies, and organizing them can be harder than it looks, especially if you’re in a hurry. Around finals week, organization can be key to studying and completing homework, as well as keeping track of tests and activities. Papers, iPads, writing utensils and books all need to be kept track of, not to mention the many documents, apps and folders that are on the iPads themselves. Take advantage of any ways to stay organized and keep your head clear because with a busy schedule of extra-curriculars and homework, organization can help save your time.

Disorganization is a problem that can be easily solved, but can account for consequences in academic areas if not fixed. Even with iPads, there is always a surplus of papers floating around in backpacks and binders that are easily lost. If these papers are important, and are misplaced, students’ grades, opportunities, and activities could suffer.

“I file my things by subject after every quarter in a filing cabinet,” said sophomore Caroline Connelly.

By filing her papers after each quarter, she is able to get rid of the material she doesn’t need, but still has it in case it’s ever necessary in the remainder of the year. She also studies for finals using blue ink, which may seem odd. However, numerous studies say blue ink helps memory, as a result of the sharper contrast blue ink has on pages that usually use black ink. The blue draws your eyes to the words and helps the writing stick in your memory.

“I also use notecards when studying for finals because the repetition helps with memorization,” said Connelly.

Sophomores Mae Yustin and Caroline Carlton also use notecards when studying for tests or finals. Notecards are easy to make—although the idea may seem tedious—and easy to study with because they can easily be grouped and mixed up. Separating your papers, documents and supplies by subjects helps to stay exponentially more organized in a simple way. It’s harder to lose things and easier to find papers and assignments specific to the subject they’re under. Binders are a great way to keep papers of the same subject together, and cleaning out folders, binders and backpacks clears away unnecessary material. Also, keep important things such as phones, IDs and keys in the same place at all times which reduces the chances of such items being lost along with increasing accessibility. Apps are great organization and study tools as well. Online notecard apps are easy to use and helpful if a student prefers to study digitally. Then the created notecards can be grouped according to class or chapter to be easily accessible in the future. Another helpful organization app is “iStudiez Pro.” The app allows a student to link their personal calendar and the school calendar into the app, as well as record practices, meetings or due dates for upcoming assignments. Recording due dates is an important and effective way to keep track of school work and assignments, whether with a paper and pen in a planner or digitally in an organizational app.

Keeping a clear study space at home is another effective way to stay organized at school. Whether a student has a desk or just a dedicated corner of their room, having a separate space for schoolwork and studying can help with focus and cleanliness. When everything necessary for school in the morning is in one place, it’s easy to grab on the way out the door, and nothing is left behind. Always doing assignments in the same place also reinforces repetition, giving a student’s mind one less topic to have attention diverted to.

Organization can lead to better grades because it allows you to have a clear mind. You save time looking for things if you know where they are. Subject separation is a helpful study tool because looking at one topic at a time allows a student to fully focus on what they’re looking at. Studying with separation or in a specific way (notecards, rewriting, reading, highlighting, note taking, etc.) can help a student picture information that will be on a test while they’re taking the test because it can seem easier to recall the facts by remembering the way they studied. Stay organized in order to be better prepared when it comes to studying under time constraints so that no test or assignment will ever feel overwhelming.