Occasionally we’re asked about our curriculum for our high school or middle school study skills courses. Specifically, most people want to know why it works. Is there any reason to trust that this curriculum for our study skills training program will actually benefit their students?
We think so. We’ve seen students really enjoy the content. Most of the time students finish the course surprised at how excited they were about study skills. Who knew a 9th grade guy could get so excited about studying?
We have five components we have focused on in developing our high school study skills course curriculum. Perhaps StudyRight isn’t the perfect fit for your student — that’s fine. Maybe someone else offers a study skills course that fits them better.
But, we’d still encourage you to make sure whatever program or curriculum your student uses, these 5 characteristics are present.
1. Great high school study skills curriculum is research-based
We have a significant research basis behind the skills we teach at StudyRight. We’ve attached a curriculum overview you can download below that contains a sample bibliography from some of the research behind our study skills curriculum.
You want to know that any study skills your student learns work. If they don’t work, why are you investing time, energy, and money in that program? A research-based approach is the best way to ensure you’re learning skills that work.
2. Great high school study skills curriculum equips students for lifelong success
Study skills are soft skills. They affect everything. Most schools don’t have a class for this; you kind of have to learn as you go (or go to StudyRight).
That said, lifelong success should be the goal of a study skills course. This isn’t like learning calculus. Calc is important, but let’s be honest. Apart from the occasional rocket scientist, you won’t use calculus for most of your life. You will immediately forget it as soon as you graduate high school.
Study skills can’t be learned that way. They need to retained. They affect your productivity. They affect your potential to earn more, to work more efficiently, to learn faster down the road, and to become an invaluable component of any company. If lifelong success isn’t in the cards for a study skills curriculum, perhaps a different program should be pursued.
3. Great high school study skills curriculum is practical
Study skills aren’t primarily an intellectual exercise. They’re highly practical. They need to have loads of application and step-by-step explanation. Students love seeing a difference after a highly practical tip actually works.
We’ve taken the approach in our curriculum that we want to give a high level explanation to everything for our abstract thinkers in the room, but we don’t leave it there. We also make it super concrete with practical tips to flesh out the high level theory. We’ve done this because different students learn different ways.
This doesn’t mean everything is step-by-step. If we get too far that direction, the skills lose some of their transferability to the rest of life. We’re talking about becoming great learners and effective workers. Because of that, our high school study skills curriculum teaches a transferable framework with practical steps.
4. Great high school study skills curriculum focuses on follow-up
This point is directly connected to the need for practical instruction. If there is no follow-up with a personal instructor, those students who would love to apply the skills and really make a difference may not see the tangible effects of the skills.
We take a long-term approach. We don’t expect students to change overnight. It’s just not possible, honestly. It can happen quickly, but a full transformation of a student’s study skills will take several months. It should, because it has to be based on habits.
Habits take time, and follow-up is crucially important for any habits to become fully developed. We conduct follow-up through email primarily, and we always offer unlimited support to any students for up to 6 months through phone calls, email responses, or Skype meetings.
5. Great high school study skills curriculum focuses on daily effort
You can change some things in the world. You can’t change other things.
A really effective high school study skills course curriculum makes sure to focus on those things you can change.
The biggest focus should therefore be on daily effort and behavior. Students have total control over those things. They can change practices. They can change the technology they’re using when they study. They can change the way they take notes, or quiz themselves, or how they structure their time. They can change their organization systems.
Find a curriculum that majors on those elements. Becoming a highly effective student doesn’t require a massive intellect, but rather a grit that is determined to succeed and the tools to do it. We help students develop both in our study skills courses, and we’re convinced that every other truly effective study skills curriculum does the same.
Still have questions?
If you’re an educator, we’d be happy to talk. We’d also welcome any questions you have through email or a phone call. Let us know if we can help you find a study skills course curriculum that will work for your student. You can also find a study skills course today.