Hi there! My name is Alex and I'm currently undertaking my Creative Writing PhD at the University of Lincoln. I'm a big fan of lots of streaming services, books, and am a published poet! I aspire to be a multi-genre,…
When it comes to studying as effectively as possible, it’s not just study methods and time management that are important. A lot of the time, having the right materials and resources for your studies can really help contribute to making your learning easier.
Now, although we are very much in the digital age, where we write and submit assessments online, there are lots of physical tools that are worth having to hand in case your technology runs into issues, or if your eyes need a rest from staring at screens!
So here’s my little list of stationery which, in my experience, can be really helpful in making your studies more effective.
Post-It notes, though seemingly simple, can be used for a variety of things when you’re studying. For example: if, to save money, you’re doing your required reading from library books (which you cannot annotate) you can use post-it notes for your annotations instead! Then, when you need to return your library book you can remove all your notes without causing any damage, and you’re not losing any information. They can also make a cheap alternative to a bookmark, or pocket notepad if you want something handy to jot down ideas/reminders for yourself throughout the day!
Regular notebooks and notepads are of course useful for making notes in lectures, drafting assignments or ideas, but better yet are notepads which come with definable sections. You can find them pretty much anywhere, including online, and are especially useful for University study.
You will be able to save money by using one notepad to organise the information for all your different modules, rather than having to keep track of multiple notebooks, and it will just make everything far easier to organise and distinguish when you’re studying!
Though much reading can be done now online via PDFs and other sources, it is highly likely you will have physical books to hand, and in my experience organising your thoughts/analyses/annotations is made way easier by using book tabs, which are readily available online for purchasing. These are particularly useful in books which you yourself own, and will help you keep a colour co-ordinated system for your notes by themes, ideas, or whatever categories are relevant for your research. They are also light, easy to carry around and very easy to use!
When it comes to the pinnacle of organisation, in my opinion nothing is more useful than the classic binder. Even if you have things organised in your notepads, eventually you are going to run out of space. With the added useful item of plastic wallets you can transfer multiple notebooks’ worth of notes into one binder. This will make your notes far easier to store, transport, and will be better protection for paper which might get dog-eared, or otherwise damaged, in notebooks as time goes by.
I have personally made great use of all the examples listed above, and in my current studies I still do!