Overcoming barriers to studying

High school can be a challenging time for students and there are multiple barriers students encounter. Let's take a look at a few of the key causes and solutions. 1. Technology Today we have access to never-ending media content, meaning there is always a reason for students to be using non-study technologies to 'keep up' with news. A good way to manage technology is for students to become aware of the present experience, there will always be media content to binge and new apps to install. What won't be here forever is your current goals. For example, if you have a History assignment due, your goal will be to at least gain a passing grade. In one years time, you will get a new task and you will not have the opportunity to go back and do your best on that assignment. Whereas technology, news, information - it will continue to generate, you will be able to view it as you had the previous year. This is why we can't measure our life by technology use, we have to be in the present moment, this involves going on a bit of a media 'hiatus' for an hour (or four) each day - so that you move forward with your goals - and take the opportunity to do your best. Tip: When thinking about whether to stay online not studying or study place your desire to binge content in a 'not in the present moment box.' You can have a literal box, table or shelf where you place your phone or just an imaginary one. Because when studying, your assessments need as much of your attention as possible. (I place my phone on my desk behind my laptop - so I know it's there - but I can't see it). Some students like to time their 'present moment' so they can study for an hour and then check their phone, whilst others like to study for an indefinite amount of time. Both methods have the same goal of focusing your attention on tasks which require completion - in the present moment.

2. Stress/overwhelm As I mentioned above there is a constant stream of information, easily accessible on our phones. And the content ranges from Kim Kardashian West to horrendous crimes committed all over the world - so students being stressed makes complete sense. However, climate change isn't the only factor contributing to stress, in high school students often feel a large pressure to succeed. This pressure is produced by both internal and external reasons, however, unlike technology it is pretty hard to go on a hiatus from stress. A great way to handle study stress is to break your goals down to gain insight into the small steps required by you on the way to achieving them. However, before breaking down your larger goals such as getting into a good university, moving into an academic class or increasing your grades, pick a smaller goal. When viewing your larger goal (which for some might be getting a passing or average grade) it can be overwhelming as there is so much work to do before that end point. When you're studying, the goals you need to think about are the ones you will encounter in your immediate future. This means all the current upcoming assignments you have are the goals you will be marking as end points for success. This means you can take a breath knowing that you have succeeded in this one assessment instead of viewing every task as a long to do list which appears endless on the way to a huge goal (which is not yet tangible and it, therefore, makes it difficult to feel as though you are close to succeeding). Tip: Bring the end goal closer - make the end goal the next assessment you hand in as this will help you give your attention to the current task, as opposed to mapping out your entire future based on a series of what feels like tons of assessments which can be overwhelming.

3. Accountability High school is a time period where independence is required when studying, however, independence when studying does not necessarily require students to be completely alone in their studies. It's important that students have someone they can receive assistance from when attempting to set goals and manage their assessments, and homework. This can be a parent, teacher or perhaps a study group may work. However, sometimes students prefer to keep their parents, and friends as support for other experiences and this is where a third party can help. A student or a small group of students can meet with a study coach to receive advice on how to best approach assessments. A study coach will help keep the student accountable by having a friendly tone whilst also existing in a role of authority. A study coach will help students plan assignments and assist with subject assessments. Students can meet in our Neutral Bay or Bondi space one on one or in a small group to say goodbye to last minute assignments, learn essential study skills and improve their high school experience. If you're struggling to keep up with assignments, or need help achieving your goals we have study coaching sessions. A study coach helps students learn, improve, stay motivated and receive positive encouragement and support from recent high school graduates who achieved top ATAR's in recent years.

Set to Study has study coaches, private tuition, and motivation consultations. Please feel free to ask us any questions via email:

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