ABOUT THE BOOK
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Most students are familiar with that sense of rising panic when, close to a deadline for a paper or the date of an exam, they realize that they know almost nothing about the subject at hand. Some students can take this situation in their stride, and some fall to pieces, getting lost amid the maze of books and tangling themselves into mental knots.
When we first embark on a course of study, we are often thrown in at the deep end and left to sink or swim. Studying is a skill, not something we are born with a natural aptitude for. If you find yourself struggling in your course, while others seem to be sailing though easily, the chances are that it is not because they are any smarter than you, but that they know how to study properly and efficiently.
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EXCERPT FROM THE BOOK
This section will deal with general note-taking, whether from lectures, seminars or books. The section on reading well will go more deeply into specific techniques for making notes from books. Good notes are the foundation of efficient study. You might wonder why note-taking is a speed study technique. Simply because good notes are the optimum format for memorization (which we will come to later).
Reading Quickly and Well
Most of us can read, but reading well and quickly for study is not the same as reading the newspaper or the back of a cereal packet. Your goal should be to read as little as possible, not for the sake of laziness, but because it is beneficial to be very focused in your study so that you can study more. It is fairly unlikely that you will need to read every word of the huge textbook you bought, and doing so would be a waste of time. You will not remember most of it, and even if you did it wouldn't be very useful. Use the index, find relevant chapters and focus your attention on them. Generally, you don't want to be reading whole chapters deeply either.
You've probably heard of people who can memorize a pack of cards in less than a minute, then recite the order back perfectly. A recent World Memory Champion, Ben Pridemore, was able to memorize a deck of cards in less than 25 seconds. Most people think that is not a feat possible for ordinary mortals, but, in fact, as most memory champions will tell you, there is a fairly simple technique behind such apparently miraculous acts of memory, and it's not hard to learn and apply it to studying. In fact, it's a technique that's been known for thousands of years: Roman and Greek orators like Cicero used it to remember their speeches.
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Guide to speed study techniques including speed reading and memorization
+ Reading Quickly and Well
+ ...and much more