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Study Skills 

Motivation and Attitude


Too tired to do anything?  

Sometimes you may feel overwhelmingly tired.  So take care of yourself and take some time out.   Especially, at the beginning of the semester, you will notice an adjustment period, during which you will require more sleep.  It is not uncommon to sleep 12 hours straight until you are back into the rhythm of heavy brainwork.

However, if you generally can't get yourself started on your assignments and homework, then you may have an overall motivational problem.  During the demanding times, it is the end goal, e.g. your chosen career, that keeps us motivated to put forth the required effort.  If that end goal is not clear, then it is hard to exert the effort.  The key element here is that the end goals has to be YOUR goal -- not your parents' or what you think others might expect from you.  You have to want it.  Career exploration with a counselor can be excellent way to help you discover what you want.

Also, remember that the way you approach studying and preparation for classes and tests are habits.  If you have never really done any school work outside of the regular class time, then you may have to work very hard at developing new habits.  Theories on the nature of change have shown that change is accomplished through different stages and may not be as easy as it seems, often requiring outside help.  Take small steps; set short-term achievable goals, and reward yourself when you accomplish these goals.


Putting a Stop to Putting It off

Mendelson & Stuckey. (1983). Putting a stop to putting it off: Procrastination management strategies. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina, University Counseling Center.  Retrieved September 15, 2003, from


College Motivation and Maintaining a Positive Attitude

Reynolds, J.(1994). College motivation and maintaining a positive attitude. In The freshmen outreach program online. Erie, PA: Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. Retrieved November 10, 2002, from


Elements of Motivation

Webb, R.L.  (2000).  Elements of motivation.  Retrieved September 15, 20003, from



Believe in yourself!


Reference:  Maxwell, M.  (1997).  Chapter 10: Building study Skills.  In M. Maxwell (ed.) Improving student learning skills: A new edition (pp.241-263).  Clearwater, FL: H&H Publishing Company Inc.

Copyright © 2004 Andrea Kosling, Selkirk College