How to Upgrade Your Study Space
Enhance your surroundings and enhance your productivity
Where you study has a significant impact on your ability to learn. While most students have their own routine when it comes to studying – a set of tried and tested rituals that helps them hunker down for productive learning – the majority don’t realize their environment also has a bearing on their ability to concentrate and learn.
Psychological research into learning environments suggests where you work is almost as important as how you work. Just making a few simple changes to your study space can have a positive impact on your productivity and help draw the division between work/home areas.
Bring audio to your study space
Experts are undecided when it comes to studying with music, but most agree that some form of soothing background noise (whether that be ambient noise or actual music), can aid concentration. If you don’t have a source of audio close by, you could use 10 gauge speaker wire to wire up your study space – as well as pumping music into other rooms around your accommodation.
Invest in a good chair and desk
It may sound obvious but maintaining good posture while you work is beneficial to productivity. A good sitting position improves alertness, relieves joint ache and keeps your body and spine in good shape. Sitting upright also reduces pain from writing and typing.
It’s therefore surprising how many students still opt to work lying on the floor, hunched over a coffee table or sprawled out in bed – none of which are great for holding concentration or alertness.
Investing in a high-quality desk and chair allows you to sit comfortably and improves body ergonomics while increasing the time you can spend working. Both also contribute to reducing body pains and the potential for repetitive strain injuries.
Get a directional lamp
Good lighting stimulates the mind and is also essential for reading. Whether you’re looking to balance the brightness of a laptop/desktop screen or want to illuminate the text in a printed book, a directional lamp can focus light where you need it most.
Ditch the clock, use a stopwatch
Research proves having a clock in view when you’re studying can have a detrimental effect on your ability to concentrate. Rather than focusing on your work, the tendency is to “clock-watch” – often leading to additional stress and a sense of wondering where the time has gone (particularly if you’re working to deadlines). Instead of having a clock in view when you’re studying, opt instead for a stopwatch or some other timing mechanism – and try to keep it out of view.
Get some plants and/or pictures
Plants have long been known to have a calming effect on the human psyche and keeping one near your study space can help dissipate feelings of stress. Also, paintings or photographs offer a good distraction, allowing you to relax for a few crucial moments between sessions. Getting lost in a picture often sparks inspiration and can lead to improved concentration levels.
A little bit of tweaking to your learning space can have a fantastic effect on your study habits, making it easier to concentrate for longer. It will also make you more organized and reduce the chances of repetitive strain injuries while increasing your general productivity.