Students with laptopsThe Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) strives to assist students in developing independent strategies and techniques to enhance their growth mindset, learning capability and test-taking skills. 

Below are many useful resources, sorted by type, aimed to assist students in learning:

Please visit with the counseling center if stress and anxiety are impacting sleep or other daily functions.

Stress Busters

Certain lifestyle changes can help alleviate symptoms of stress and anxiety.

  • Eat a low sugar, well-balanced diet
  • Get 8-10 hours of sleep 
  • Meditate 10-20 minutes a day
  • Exercise 3-5 times a week
  • Keep a diary of your feelings and thoughts
  • Recognize your stress triggers
  • Take deep breaths in through your nose and exhale slowly
  • Talk to someone you trust 
  • Avoid drugs and alcohol

Download these tips as a printable bookmark.

Overcoming Test Anxiety

Before the test:

  • Prepare for the exam with regular study habits  
  • Eat well and avoid sugary foods  
  • Exercise 
  • Take practice questions or exams 

During the test:

  • Think positive  
  • Relax your muscles 
  • Take deep breaths 
  • Skip ones you do not have rapid recall on and come back

After the test:

  • Note what worked or went well 
  • Reflect upon the questions you missed 
  • Set goals and create a study calendar for the next test  




Strengthen your Attention and Focus – Read this article and practice the 11 tips given to strengthen your mind muscle. 

Discovering how you learn or what your personality style preferences are can impact your ability to study, comprehend and access material. Take a learning inventory below to see how you learn best.


The Learning and Study Strategies Inventory (LASSI) can help you to determine where your strengths and weaknesses are in the areas of Skill, Will and Self-Regulation.

  • Skill Component of Strategic Learning
    • Information Processing, Selecting Main Ideas and Test Strategies.
  • The Will Component of Strategic Learning
    • Attitude, Motivation and Anxiety.
  • The Self-regulation Component of Strategic Learning
    • Concentration, Time Management, Self-Testing and Using Academic Resources.

 Personality Test

Class Notes

Before class:

  • Preview handouts & objectives
  • Record 4 of the most important key ideas

During class:

  • Take your own notes
  • Transfer lecture into your own words

After class:

  • Summarize the lecture without looking at your notes

SQR3 Method

Cornell Method

Mind Mapping


Create flash cards as a way to record and study notes


  • SSR Previewing Technique
    • Skim – Titles, headings, subheadings
      • What is the text going to be about based on skim?
      • What are the four main points in the text?
    • Scan – Graphics, tables, charts
      • What information will the reading give you?
    • Read – Read the first and last line of each page or paragraph or speed read 2-3 paragraphs under each heading
      • What questions do you have about the material
  • Read Around the Text Strategy (RAT)

Increase Your Reading Speed

If you wish to improve your reading speed, this video will teach you strategies to increase speed and still maintain or grow comprehension.

Reading Strategies 

These strategies will help you recall what you read and get the most out of what you read.

  • SQR3 Reading Strategy – Use the SQR3 method to better grasp the concepts and process the information in written text.
    • Scan – Look through the first sentences of each paragraph, and highlight important information
    • Question – Look through questions and highlight answers to the questions.
    • Read – Read the material and highlight important information
    • Respond – Answer the questions you highlighted.
    • Review – Locate answers you missed or material that was confusing and highlight clarifications or further learning. Review or summarize what you just learned
  • BDA Reading Strategy
    • Before:
      • What is your purpose for reading?
      • Preview material
      • What do you already know?
      • What questions do you have?
    • During:
      • Read Actively (answer questions you had)
    • After:
      • Summarize what you learned
      • Answer any questions you had before

Active Reading

AHA Strategy

  • Annotate – Annotate with thoughts, ideas and questions
  • Highlight – Highlight only the most important information (color code your highlights) 
  • Answer –  Answer questions you developed in preview or those you had while reading. 

Medical Reading Resources

  • Free Medical Journals : These journals are free to the public and include a variety of subject areas.
  • Free Books for Docs: These books are all medically based and free to the public and include a variety of subject areas.
  • Watch the Study Cycle video by DMU CTL
  • Utilize visuals and stories with Picmonic, which has multiple medical courses and breaks down material in a fun, meaningful and engaging way.
  • Create images of what you are studying
  • Turn difficult concepts or words into pictures
  • Create diagrams
  • Develop storyboards using images in lecture slides
  • Draw images or color pre-drawn images of challenging areas

  • Ride a stationary bike while reading material for class
  • Consider using the walking stations located in the Library while reading or studying

  • Create an outline of the body or a system with tape or sidewalk chalk and walk through the processes
    • Example: Outline the heart and walk through the path the blood takes
  • Use charts or tables to show relationships
  • Work in a standing position
  • Put a stretch band / therapy band around your ankles in class and stretch it
  • Act out material


Dopamine is the feel good drug that is released in the brain when you have a pleasurable or emotional response. Emotional triggers or responses help cement learning and recall. Therefore, games can be great studying tools to help you to get to know the material.

  • Test Pong
    • Create test prep questions and place in the bottom of the cups
    • Bounce your ball into a cup
    • When you get your ball in a cup read the question.
    • If you get it right, you get to clear the cup.
    • If you get it wrong a new question goes into it
    • The winner gets all the cups cleared
  • Flashcard Games
    • Quizlet has two games built into the system. You can build your own cards or play with the cards already int the system. The games are Scatter and Gravity, which are both fun, engaging and will help you study. Scatter is a sort game where you must race against time to clear the board. and Gravity requires a short answer response to keep your world from blowing up.
    • Scatter: Anatomy and Physiology Muscle System Example
    • Gravity: Endocrine System Example
  • Study Stack has a variety of games to play using the flashcards already built or you can create your own.
  • Free Online Medical Games – hosts a variety of games under multiple categories.

Create To-Do-Lists Lists to help you organize and prioritize your assignments, tests, and activities. When they are written down you do not have to hold the important information in your mind, which leaves room and effort for the actual task.

  • Google Keep – Pin sticky notes to this sleek pinboard-style app to improve productivity.
  • Wunderlist – A cloud-based to-do list manager and time management app
  • Play a game with your to-do-list 
    • HabitRPG – Turns your to-dos and pet projects into a game, where you level up your character, defeat enemies, and collect loot and rewards for your characters just by doing the things you need to do every day. It is available on Windows, Mac, iOS and Android.  
    • CARROT – Turn time management into a game. Play CARROT to earn points for completing tasks. But be prepared to lose points if you slack off.


Setting up a schedule is vital in helping you to plan your time effectively and efficiently. 

  • Daily Planning Review how you spend your time in order to help you prioritize your goals and objectives. This exercise may help you to see where you are losing time, and where you can fit in more study time. 
  • Weekly Planning – Review and/or schedule how you spend time each week. Creating a schedule will help you to stay focused and you will be in control of your own time. 
  • Hourly Schedule – This is a printable schedule starting at 5 am to 10pm and can be used to schedule exams, study sessions, and future tasks. 

Increase Productivity