Group Studying & Productivity, tips on studying effectively, and a book on how to win friends

Group Studying & Productivity, tips on studying effectively, and a book on how to win friends
Photo by Alexis Brown / Unsplash

It’s early in the morning, and you're briskly walking into what you expect to be a productive group study session. 

As you enter the room, your ears are buzzing with the constant chatter of your classmates—a collective debate over complex theories. 

The session finally starts, but instead of the focused academic discussion you hoped for, the situation quickly gets out of hand. 

The loud one starts dominating the conversation, turning it into a monologue rather than a collaborative discussion…

The more reserved one attempts to steer the conversation back to the subject, but their efforts are drowned out by the more outspoken…

And all the rest have already shifted their attention to an endless scroll on social media…

As a result, you leave the session feeling more confused and frustrated than when you arrived: the questions you had prepared remain unanswered, and the concepts you hoped to clarify are still murky. That’s the moment when the assumption in your head crystalizes into a belief: If I were alone, I would get so much more done than that - that was a complete waste of time!

So is social learning an utter waste of time and energy? Are there some steps you could follow to veer the session in the right direction–or it’s pointless? That’s our topic for today, and it’s going to be a beefy one. 

4 Common Group Studying Mistakes

1. Group study sessions can quickly turn into social gatherings if they lack structure. And usually, they do. 

2. We all know that one person who loves the sound of their own voice a bit too much, right? That makes it tough for the quieter folks to get a word in edgewise.

3. It's frustrating when half the group shows up motivated to work, and the other half... well, isn't. This mismatch can really throw a wrench in the works.

4. Phone notifications and off-topic chatter. Should I say more?

How to make a Group Studying Effective?

🏷️Set Clear Goals from the Get-Go.

What's on the menu for today? Understanding a tricky concept, reviewing a chapter, or tackling those problem sets? Clarifying this upfront keeps everyone on the same page.

🏷️Establish Unbreakable Rules

They should be tough and non-negotiable. No phones buzzing, everyone gets their turn at bat and sticks to the topic—these simple rules can make a world of difference.

🏷️Prepare Individually First

If everyone does their bit of homework before the group meets, you're all starting from a solid base. This way, the group time is all about going deeper, not rehashing the basics to the ones that are left behind.

🏷️No More than 6

No matter how prepared or disciplined you all are, a group of more than 6 people is set for disaster. A group of 4-6 usually hits the sweet spot.

🏷️Assign Roles

That one’s a bit more advanced, but it can save a lot of precious time. Keep things on track with a moderator, have someone jot down the key points, and maybe a timekeeper to make sure everyone gets their fair share of airtime.

🏷️Try different learning styles.

We all learn differently—some like pictures, some like words, and some like to talk it out. Mix it up to keep things interesting and effective for everyone.

Why Should I even bother trying a group study session?

Social learning helps you understand better.

Ever had that "Aha!" moment when someone explains something in just the right way? That's the magic of group study.

Social learning keeps you accountable.

Nobody wants to be the one who lets the team down. That’s why group study can give you that extra push to come prepared.

Social learning allows you to explore new perspectives.

Each new perspective can make things clearer and more interesting.

Social learning gives you emotional support.

Let's face it, studying can be a lonely and stressful gig. Having your study buddies around can make the journey a whole lot more enjoyable.

Enjoy this type of content? This is part of this week's issue of our newsletter, Lofi Brew. Considering subscribing, it means a lot to us!