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Summary: Reading, Research and Composition (Study Skills)

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What do we mean by independent studstudy skills?

These are the key skills required by students in meeting assessment tasks while at university. These are the independent studstudy skills where, as students in higher education, people will have far less input and direction in these areas than they may have experienced at school and college.

In brief, the key skills or competencies involved are:

  • Organisational skills
  • Time Management
  • Sources of Information for Study
  • Effective Reading
  • Notetaking
  • Planning
  • Writing skills
  • Reflecting on feedback
  • Revision Skills

Benefits of independent studstudy skills

  • Competence in study skills can be transferred to employment and used in further academic study such as research.
  • Students with these skills are more independent learners than those without and achieve better grades.
  • Students with these skills find academic learning easier to navigate.

Some of the general concerns and issues

Students with disabilities may face a number of difficulties in developing independent studstudy skills. These include:

  • Lack of confidence due to past challenges with different aspects of study skills
  • Accessing study skills support and resources may in themselves be a challenge.
  • Students with disabilities may well have had to work longer and harder than some of their peers to get to university.
  • The physical and mental impacts of impairments may mean students are unable to study productively at times.
  • Students may need to take regular breaks from study.
  • Challenges with organisation and time management
  • Listening and writing notes at the same time
  • Accessing traditional modes of demonstrating work.

Points for reflection

  • How does your practice support the needs of students with regard to independent studstudy skills?
  • What changes to teaching and learning strategies could be made in these situations? Might you do things differently?
  • Who do you need to involve in order to make support for students effective?
  • What are the main barriers to you accommodating students’ needs with regard to development of independent studstudy skills? How can these be overcome?
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