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reading stuff

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by zxspectrum, Sep 9, 2007.

  1. zxspectrum

    zxspectrum Gigabyte Poster Premium Member

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    Ok people this may sound daft, but when you read up on a subject which can be anything you like, how do you go about doing it

    As im doing a degree i have to read a lot of material but i cant seem to get a pattern going. Im very easily distracted and also i live in a student house so theres not much chance of getting any peace either. The uni has a library with quiet study space whih i seldom use.

    Now some people have methods like having some music on in the background , which doesnt work or me as i like dance music, yes the mindless repetitive thumping noise sort of stuff.

    What methods do you lot use and do they work well for you , if you like include your diet and fitness in brief detail if you like.

    Cheers
    Ed
     
    Certifications: BSc computing and information systems
    WIP: 70-680
  2. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    When I was at Uni I read the books and took notes of important stuff along the way.

    I cant seem to do that these days though, so with the Mike Meyers all in one exam guide and the PC Tecnician street smarts book as I am studying for the A+ I am highlighting important points in the actual books and this seems to be working for me
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  3. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    It depends. On IT related stuff I get the reading material, read it over fairly quickly once so I have some ideas as to how to use it, and then start putting it into use in some way that is meaningful to me. That immediately puts me in a frame of mind to concentrate, and directs me right back to what I've just been reading. Using the concepts I just read about really helps cement the ideas in my mind.

    I'd also recommend making sure you get plenty of rest. It's much easier to stay relaxed while concentrating when you're not tired or sleepy.

    PS. If it's not a subject you can't use immediately take notes on what you're reading. It helps to remember the important concepts if you physically write them down, and helps you focus on them.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  4. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Depends on what you're studying. When I'm writing (which for me, is a lot like studying) I usually am playing jazz (listening to the Bill Evans Trio right now) and am sitting at a computer. Most of what I work on requires that I am either writing on my computer or practicing some sort of computer related task. If I need a book open, it's usually open on the desk next to the keyboard.

    When I was in uni, I did what greenbrucelee does; go to a quiet corner of the library, read and take notes. I'd have to take frequent breaks because it's hard for me to sit for long periods of time. A cup of coffee or tea sometimes helps.

    Also, set goals for yourself such as how many pages you'll read before taking a break and how much studying you'll accomplish in a single study session. Build in some "rewards" such as doing something fun after the study session is over.

    When I'm working at home (such as today) I take breaks by fixing myself a cup of tea or doing a load of laundry and such. I know that sounds boring but it gets me away from the computer and I do accomplish numerous small tasks in the house. The missus and my son are out for the day so I have the place to myself, which is nice.

    I also take breaks by going online (such as now) to think about something other than my work. During the week, I eat lunch at my desk while I'm working and then use my lunch hour to go for a walk. The industrial complex I work in has parks and streams so it's a very nice environment to go for a walk in. It helps to be able to look into the distance and look at green, living things.
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  5. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    Excellent advice, Trip.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  6. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    I usually study at home. I hardly ever go to the library to study. In fact the only time you'll catch in the library is when I need a book for class. Usually I do some of my studying in class when the teacher gives us some extra time for reviews.

    Aside from that when I am home, just go into my room, open a book (nothing playing in the backround), and just study. Also I like trip I cant sit down for a long time, I have to take breaks every 30 min or so.

    Also its good to have energy when you are studying. I usually go to the gym right before I begin to study and that gives me stamina for a good while.
     
    Certifications: A+ | CCA | CCAA | Network+ | MCDST | MCSA | MCP (270, 271, 272, 290, 291) | MCTS (70-662, 70-663) | MCITP:EMA | VCA-DCV/Cloud/WM | VTSP | VCP5-DT | VCP5-DCV
    WIP: VCAP5-DCA/DCD | EMCCA
  7. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    I can study just about anywhere. In college, I'd just sit in front of the TV as it played CNN Headline News over and over every 30 minutes... not really paying attention to the TV, but just to have something repetitive going on in the background. Kept me zoned out.

    Nowadays, I'll just read, skimming the stuff I already know, and carefully reading the stuff I don't. If there's actual hands-on stuff I can do, I do it to help familiarize myself with it.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  8. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    My methods often depend on what I'm studying, and for what purpose.

    I can't study on a computer - ie, make notes. I find it impossible. I never retain anything. There's something so... satisfying about handwriting notes. Yes, I know that's sad.

    The biggest issues I have with studying are that I get easily distracted, and I always have to have several things on the go. I can't just *sit there* and study. And if a butterfly goes past, I'm doomed.

    I will listen to music when I study, and it honestly doesn't matter what genre. At the moment, am listening to a lot of Tool, Sigur Ros and Perfect Circle. I like studying to classical music too.

    I will also play a game in the background. Nothing too absorbing - Championship Manager or something of that ilk. Just to keep my brain ticking over.

    I don't know what it is, but I can't just sit there and concentrate. Even when I'm writing my novel, I tend to have music or a funny DVD on in the background.

    Studying really is something that has to be tailored to your personality. Do you think that, because you find it more difficult to sit down and 'take' information from a book, you should try audio learning?

    When I'm cycling, I listen to audiobooks I've bought previously from Preplogic - I'm just waiting for my CCNA audio set to arrive, so I can get up to speed with that.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, 70-410, 70-411
    WIP: Modern Languages BA
  9. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

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    Dear gods no! :shocked

    I'm a bit anal when it comes to books. I wont even dogear the corners any more to note where Im at. I just couldnt bring myself to write in one.

    On Topic, :biggrin , I find that I always read through the book once, without taking notes, and then go back through it taking notes later.

    That said, I just cant get studying to work for me. Perhaps thats why i still havent got certified.
     
    Certifications: ITIL Foundation; MCTS: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2010, Administration
    WIP: None at present
  10. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    That's probably because typing notes on a computer in a word processor and writing them down with pad and pencil require two separate thought processes.

    My son David had terrible learning disabilities and one of the fellows who tested him suggested different methods of learning for him based on different senses. One of the oddest suggestions he made was to have David use his feet to write out letters in dirt or sand in addition to writing them on paper with a pencil.

    I don't recall ever implementing that particular method with him, but it does illustrate why there are such differences in how we answer this question. It also points out the flaw in a standardized educational system because for the most parts, the teaching methods are all aimed at people who learn the same way.
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  11. zxspectrum

    zxspectrum Gigabyte Poster Premium Member

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    Cheers for all your feedback on this, its always good to get peoples opinions on even the smallest of things.

    Ed
     
    Certifications: BSc computing and information systems
    WIP: 70-680

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