ADHD Study Tips

9 ADHD Study Tips

1. Make a plan for the day

Even though having a plan doesn’t prevent ADHD brains from distractions or procrastination, NOT having a plan is an easy road to those things. Help your busy brain to be less overwhelmed by determining your goals for the day. Grab a piece of paper and write down the two most important tasks for the day (break them down into smaller tasks if needed).

Make a Study Plan
Interest Based Learning

2. Interest-Based Learning

ADHD brains thrive in curious learning environments. How can you create this curiosity and craving for knowledge in your studies? Allow yourself time to explore and learn about the topics that interest you. Watch videos, listen to podcasts, or learn from professionals in that field. Create a challenge to find curious and interesting points about the topics that are less appealing to you – is there anyone interesting that you could learn from about these topics?

3. Set Audio Cues

Audio cues can be a great reminder to check in with yourself. ADHD’ers can often get hyperfocused or distracted (both of these states have their challenges). Set an audio cue – such as playing a whole music album or creating an alarm. When the album finishes or the alarm rings, ask yourself:

  • Did I get distracted? What happened?
  • Do I need some water or food? 
  • Do I need to change my approach to the way I’m doing things?
  • What does my brain need? Do I feel tired/unmotivated or overwhelmed?
Setting Audio Cues
Gamification for studying

4. Gamification

Gamification is a great way to add excitement, challenge, and newness to routine things. So let’s make studying fun! How can you gamify your studies and make them seem less tedious? Here are some ideas:

  • Make your test preparation into a competitive quiz show
  • Turn your learning into a D&D scenario
  • Assign numbers 1-6 to questions or assignments and roll the dice
  • Use apps like Forest or Habitica

5. Use Visual Learning

Pictures, videos, and mind mapping can be more engaging for ADHD brains. Let’s use it to your advantage! Can you watch videos or movies about the material that you’re studying? Can you turn complicated information into an engaging and easy-to-understand mind map?

Visual Learning for ADHD
Writing Things Down for ADHD

6. Write

Writing slows down the mind and helps to process information better. Whenever you feel overwhelmed with what you’re learning – journal. You can use these questions as a guide:

  • What’s stressing me out?
  • Is something confusing? Who/what could help me with this? 
  • What do I need to do next? 
  • What am I afraid of?                                                                                    

Seeing this information on paper can help ease the overwhelm and take a more logical approach to what’s going on. Also, for those who learn best from doing things, writing can be a great tool to remember information easier.

7. Add movement

Movement releases chemicals in the brain that allow ADHD’ers to focus better. Use fidget toys, a desk bike, or do any form of exercise in-between tasks.

For example: do 10 sit-ups before reading the next chapter.

Movement for ADHD
Remove Distractions for ADHD

8. Remove distractions

High-stimulation environments can make it difficult to focus. Clear your desk, so there are fewer items vying for your attention. Leave your phone in another room. Use brown noise to help your brain focus. Experiment with your learning environment – where do you feel most focused?

9. accountability buddy

Accountability can work wonders for ADHD brains. We often can feel unmotivated to be accountable to ourselves when working alone, but as soon as there are other people involved – it gives ADHD brains a motivation boost. There are many ways to achieve this feeling:

  • Play study videos on YouTube
  • Use a body doubling service
  • Actually, study with someone else – maybe there’s a study group at your school? Or could you meet up with a classmate?
  • Use public spaces like coffee shops or libraries where other people are working or studying
Accountability for ADHD

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study tips worksheet

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