Best Method For Improving Learning For Students

When it comes to studying, I often wonder what are better methods to improve learning for students. Executive functions have always been at the core of any successful study session. For those who are new here to EFC, let’s quickly identify key executive functioning skills: initiation, inhibition, working memory, self-control, cognitive flexibility, mental resilience, and progress tracking. Keep in mind that there is not a single person born with executive functioning skills, all of these skills are learned throughout our lives; some earlier than others. According to a meta-analysis conducted by the University of Zaragoza in Spain, executive function deficiencies affect all levels of learning for students. So don’t be alarmed! We have gathered this quick read for you to learn how to improve your study skills with executive functioning. 

Improving Learning for Students Using Executive Functions skills:

Working Memory & Progress Checking

Working memory is one of the executive functioning skills that helps us remember information. Those who struggle with it often find information difficult to remember or recall abstract concepts, such as math. One of the best ways to practice this skill is to review the information right after you receive it. This could be asking the professor questions right after class, visiting office hours, and even reviewing the information with classmates or study buddies. Practicing this skill for education allows your brain to make the connections needed to recall the information when you most need it. 

Progress checking is an important skill that ensures we are making significant steps towards our goals and improving learning for students. Keeping a checklist is a great way to practice progress checking. You can even ask others to keep you accountable when it comes to executive functioning skills. As we study and practice good learning for students, we will notice that we are gaining a better understanding of the material, as well as noticing our abilities to study longer and more efficiently.

Inhibition and Initiation

When we think about learning for students, we find that the most notable struggle is procrastination. Procrastination is actually a combination of a lack of executive functioning skills, such as inhibition and initiation. When we struggle to begin our study session, we are lacking initiation. When we choose to do other less important things, we are struggling with inhibition. Both of these are important skills for education as studying requires strong executive functions skills. A good way to practice this, is to set a time to study and a separate time to do the other activities you may rather have more fun with. Good initiation and inhibition skills create great study habits, which also means good learning for students.

Self-Control, Cognitive Flexibility, and Mental Resilience

A great way to improve learning for students is to make sure that we have self-control. In class, a student suddenly becomes disruptive, or they may ask an irrelevant question. Situations like this are a combination of multiple executive functioning skills. Practicing the skills of self-control, cognitive flexibility, and mental resilience create a nurturing environment for education. It’s important to recognize the right time for certain questions, and the right place for certain actions as well. Much of this requires the flexibility and resilience to stay focused so that there is a continuously positive environment and overall improved learning for students.

It’s hard to say which skill is the most important, especially when it comes to learning for students. So it is important to keep in mind that all executive functioning skills often work in conjunction with each other, and we can’t just practice one skill at a time. Having effective study skills for students is important since many of these skills carry on into our professional lives. Practice these skills yourself, be patient, and have a support system to help you with executive functioning skills. Executive Functions are important when it comes to learning for students because these are the essential skills that will not only make studying more easier and effective, it will make planning out their life more manageable. 

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