Quandary: Group Study or Alone Study, Which One Is Better ?

Quandary: Group Study or Alone Study, Which One Is Better ?

To this question, there is no direct or logical answer. It all depends on the individual choice. Both the types of studies have some pros and cons, and one size never fits all. So both the options can be tried based on your comfort. It isn’t that one option is better than the other, but the option might prove better for you. It may be that group motivates you to study better when alone, or it may be that you cannot study alone ever. So it all depends on the individual. Though it depends on the individual choice, its choice shouldn’t just be based on the general perception but on the acquired knowledge and experience. 


In this article, I am highlighting the pros of both the sides. Evaluate these pros against your inner traits to get a better understanding. First, let me pick ‘Study Alone’ pros.


STUDY ALONE


Distraction is minimal:


In a group setting, the chances of distraction are high. The conversation generally shifts from the topic of study to current events and other things. This shift adds to the enjoyment but takes away the time. So when you study alone the temptations are minimized leading to fewer interruptions. 


Ease the Time-Management:


When you study alone, you do not always have to start from scratch. You start from where you left.  In a group setting, the studies start by keeping in mind the pace of the slowest learner or a laggard. This slows the speed of a winner. When someone studies alone, he can choose to focus on those areas that he feels like working on instead of bothering about everything. In a group setting it is impossible. It may be that you have mastered a concept, but the other person in the group has not. So when you study together, you again have to revise or learn the already learned concept. This is frustrating for some. 


Let you to choose your pace of study:


Have you ever felt that some topics took a lot of your learning time in comparison with others? Do you sometimes feel that your friend understands some concepts like arithmetic etc. more quickly than you do? You need not feel demoralized by it. This is generally felt by many, is not a failure anyhow. Everybody learns concepts at their own pace. So when someone studies alone, he can choose the pace of study to suit his own needs instead of others. He can take as much time to read, reread or comprehend as he feels suitable. 


STUDY IN GROUP


It enhances the inner motivation:


Isn’t it a great feeling to know that others depend on your knowledge or feedback for better learning? This great feeling is the driving force for studying and learning. It motivates a lot. When we study in a group we can create a mock test, take a chance to quiz one another and assist each other with the hard to learn concepts, this increases your interest and motivation. The great feeling of having helped others and getting it back in return is enough to run the engine of motivation. 


Retention power increases:


It is a well-known fact that more you verbalize and share the concepts, the quicker you are to learn the concept, and that concept is retained in the memory for long. As in the group study, we hear a lot about different concepts from others, it helps to retain that concept for long. 


Gives deep insights and a dearth of information: 


When we study in a group, we share different kinds of views with each other in regard to the topic being studied. This broadens our horizon. Insights and information shared in the groups enhance the learning and thinking skills of the participants. They frequently get exposed to new information, and to add more to that information, they research more. This research again adds more information and insight to the topic. 


As you have learned that both the types of study styles have their benefits. You can choose either of them. You can even hit a middle road. Enjoy the group learning for a while and then go on to studying alone. I personally choose the middle road, as it feels more fulfilling in respect of emotional and intellectual needs. 


Every student has his own way of learning. Different students prefer different study environments. Some prefer studying in groups whereas some like to study all on their own. Even though both of these methods have their own perks and downfalls, there is an ongoing debate regarding which one is better. What are the benefits of study groups? Does studying in groups really provide any advantages at all? Or studying alone is the way to go? If these questions have been lingering in your mind for quite some time then you have come to the right place. Here we are going to examine the details of both study methods, that is, studying alone and group studies. 


Group Study:


Creating a group study room involves students sharing their opinions, knowledge, and methods that can prove to be mutually beneficial to all the group members. Such a group is commonly known as a study group. Before forming a study group, all members must ensure that they are studying the same topic according to the same syllabus. 


5 Benefits Of Study Groups:


There are some advantages a group study room has to offer which makes it the foremost choice for most of the students. Let us take a detailed look at the advantages of studying in groups. 


1. Better Communication


Due to continue discussions and interaction between the group members, the communication skills witness a drastic improvement. This interaction also acts as a confidence booster. It improves the vocabulary of students and enhances their overall communication skills. 


2. Decreased Stress Levels


Group studies provide a relaxed environment to students who are excessively stressed out right before exams. Studying in a lighter atmosphere with significantly less stress improve the chances of getting better scores in exams.


3. Creates Enjoyable Learning Opportunities


The way of learning becomes way more interesting when the study session is interactive. The students can discuss innovative ideas and devise creative ways to solve problems. They learn new study techniques that are useful in breaking the monotony that comes with studying alone. Discussions are way more enjoyable than trying to memorize a textbook sitting alone in a room. 


4. Better Learning


Every student has different problem areas but the issues are definitely not the same for everyone. One student might be good at math whereas another could have a decent understanding of social sciences. When such students are in a study group they can mutually benefit one another by teaching their fellow members new concepts. Groups provide a variety of ways to learn a single thing. So, even if a member doesn't understand something using a particular method, he can adopt some variations in the methodology to understand a topic or a subject.


5. Regularity


Groups are mostly disciplined and organize discussions at frequent intervals. This way, the students who are not very particular about following a schedule when studying on their own have to maintain a routine while studying in groups. There is no scope for procrastination.


3 Disadvantages of a Study Group:


1. Conflicts


Conflicts can arise while deciding a topic, venue, or anything that involves different opinions. This can sometimes take an ugly turn and lead to fights. Some people are also intolerable to such conflicts and leave the group in between which can disrupt the entire system. 


2. Losing Focus


In order for a study group to function efficiently, the members are required to be focused the entire time. But since there are multiple students, it is easy to go off topic or get distracted in the middle of a study session. This causes a lot of wastage of time and which is not acceptable for an effective session. 


3. Gossiping


If the group members are classmates or people that hang out in similar social groups, they are likely to start discussing random matters. If it is a group of classmates they can start complaining about teachers or fellow classmates. This is one of the biggest disadvantages of group study.


5 Tips For Getting The Most Out Of Study Groups:


Take a look at these tips for getting the most out of study groups that are meant to make your group study sessions more productive and effective.


1. Preparing In Advance


Have something prepared for the topic you are going to discuss. If you show up completely clueless you are more likely to be left behind in the discussion. Having prior knowledge will enable you to contribute to the discussion and make the most out of it.


2. Stay Focused


If a member tends to get off topic try to turn the discussion again to the topic that has been decided for discussion. When all the members decide to stay focused and organized they can make the study session as fruitful as possible.


3. Pick An Appropriate Meeting Spot


When you decide on a place to meet up, make sure that it is free from distractions, and can provide you a quiet environment to discuss topics of interest. You can meet at a friend's place that has fewer distractions or a public place such as a cafe that is quieter.


4. Bring Notes


When all the members of a study group bring their own notes, each member gets a chance to contribute his ideas in an organized way. All members will find new ideas in each other's notes which can help in increasing knowledge and deepen the learning process.


5. Take Breaks


Taking short breaks in between group sessions will minimize the time spent on taking beverages or going to the restroom. Relax during the break time and discuss something else other than studies. This will allow your mind to refresh.


Self-Study:


There are some students that need their own space if they wish to understand a concept. Most of them adopt a self-learning approach. They learn to be alone and are often more focused. 


3 Advantages Of Self-Study:


1. No Differences


When you are on your own, you don't have to worry about conflicts and differences regarding anything. This gives a certain level of peace of mind and is useful in enhancing the effectiveness of learning. 


2. Freedom


You are free to choose the topic that interests you and study in the location of your preference. You can take breaks according to your mood. 


3. Choosing Your Own Pace


Keeping up with the pace of every member is one of the downsides of studying in a group. When there are many people to look out for, you have to adjust accordingly. Every student has his own pace of learning things. When you are studying alone, you don't have to compromise on your pace.


3 Disadvantages Of Self Study:


1. Reduced Learning Speed


When you don't interact with other people, studies can easily become tedious. This can slow down your learning to a great extent. 


2. Distractions


When you are all on your own, the temptations are increased. You might feel the urge to check your social media notifications, text messages, chats, etc which can have an adverse impact on your studies.


3. Tough Subjects


Self-study can do more harm than good in subjects that require a deeper understanding of concepts such as physics, mathematics, etc. An expert opinion such as that of a professor or a teacher is required to understand these subjects.


4 Best Methods To Study Alone And Effectively:


Self-study can prove to be fruitful if you know the best methods to study alone and effectively. Let us take a look at some tips.


1. Setting Your Objectives


Setting result oriented goals or objectives goes a long way. In order to keep yourself focused, make a time-bound target and give your best to achieve it. When you keep an eye on the results you can proceed accordingly.


2. Make A Schedule


A person who studies alone is more prone to losing focus over time. Therefore, making a schedule and sticking to it is absolutely mandatory. Write down the duration of a study session, breaks, meals, snacks, etc in your schedule and work accordingly.


3. Stay In Touch With Experts


When you opt for a self-study based approach you need to know that there are some areas in which you will need expert help. Therefore, it is necessary to stay in touch with your teachers and clarify doubts frequently.


4. Use The Technology Effectively


With the advancement in science and technology, more and more students are seen opting for self-studies. When you utilize the internet for increasing your knowledge, you create a path for your overall academic success. There are numerous resources, e-books, online tutoring help, online mock tests, and other study material available over the internet. Utilize everything to your benefit. 


In conclusion, Bottom line, no method is better than the other. It all comes down to one thing- your own preferences. Studying in groups or studying alone is a personal choice. A good way is to avail the benefits of both these methodologies by combining group studies and self-study sessions. 

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