Find out how you can learn most effectively. This self-knowledge is valuable not only in your academic years but also through out your career and life. There are 4 pairs:
read or listen,
concept or detail,
numbers or description,
write or talk.
Make the most use of your preferred mode but cover for your weak ones.
If you are a reader – scan the full text, summarize key points into cards, revise from them.
If you are a listener: always attend lectures, form a study group with readers, summarize key points into written notes, and record these notes in sound.
If you are a detail-person, find out from conceptual persons what the wider picture is. If you are a conceptual person, make sure you don’t miss the details that support the general idea.
If you are weak in numbers, practice until you overcome this weakness because mucht of school is about numbers. (Obviously you would want to avoid science and technical fields).
If you are more of a talker, you need to practice writing because most exams are written.
Improve on all the modes of learning. You may or may not be good at your preferred mode, so strengthen that first.
In reading, the most important thing is to find answers to questions, to read selectively and not fast, and to source the best materials.
In listening the key is absolute concentration, and having a storyline.
To develop numbers and math skills, a long period of training is required and the key is practise and more practise, while for description the key is reading a range of genres.
To balance concept and detail, always have a tree structure.
The key in writing is to have a strong structure, and to have both concept and detail, varied sentence structure, good grammar and spelling.
I learn best by seeing pictures and charts, and listening. As a student, I always attended lectures and listened with great concentration. Reading was minimized by participating in group discussions, which I organized with people who were good at reading.
An ex-colleague is a reader. She rarely attended lectures, went to many parties, yet got top results. How? She borrowed notes of good students and filled in the gaps by discussion and occasional reading.
Whatever your learning mode, make the most use of conceptual diagrams and charts.
Choose the subjects that fit your skills. A girl in my son’s school took an unusual combination: all her choices were languages – not only was she the top student, she took some of the exams a year earlier. Another student chose the greatest number of mathematics subjects and the rest were sciences (which are heavily mathematical) even though she did not intend to pursue either science or math.