Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Late Night Studying

  1. Oct 9, 2014 #1


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Quick question.

    It's late. The moon is high in the sky, shining its soft glow on your homework through the window. The window of... where?

    That is, where have you guys gone to study late at night? A local venue open for night owls like yourself? A friends house? On the roof of a 67 chevy while Omcheeto serenades you with love songs and the slightly out-of-tune notes from his guitar?

    That's all.
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 9, 2014 #2
    I spent a lot of long nights at the library with a group of friends/study partners, usually listening to some good music and making jokes more than actually solving physics problems. As time went on, I would just study in my room. Now I study when I feel like it, and don't lose sleep over it.
  4. Oct 9, 2014 #3
    Last year when I lived on Campus I would study in the library more than anywhere else, but this year, having moved off campus, I have found a spot in my conservatory that suits my needs.

    It's not too cold yet and it beats getting the bus back in the small hours. It's not always practical though; living with 5 business/arts majors, our study habits are quite different and the conservatory is joined to our sitting room.
  5. Oct 9, 2014 #4
    I used to stay in the libraries until 10 PM and only went home earlier if the snow fell heavily. I still remember the day I walked home on thick falling snow while listening and singing "My only wish this year" with Britney in my headset player.
  6. Oct 9, 2014 #5


    User Avatar
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    There was a 24 hour convenient store next to campus. I'd spend many, many a late night there. The particular store had a row of booths by the window, each big enough for a few people to spread out their books and study.

    Bottomless pot of coffee (with a purchase of a plastic coffee mug which I carried with me like sacred treasure). Easy access to charbroil & cheese and many other microwavable delicacies if I ever needed a snack. Half an isle of playing cards and other distractions if I needed a break. I spent more time that year studying at the convenient store than studying in the dorm.

    The attendant didn't mind whatsoever, probably because he had no personal stake in how much coffee I drank. Or perhaps having additional people in the store reduced the likelihood of robbery.

    I even met some friends there.

    Oh, the memories. (And the nachos. Never forget the secret of nachos.)
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2014
  7. Oct 9, 2014 #6
    For the late night studiers, just remember that the best thing you can do to improve your memory is to get quality sleep.
  8. Oct 9, 2014 #7
    That's true, although I find that when preparing for an exam, long hours of study, followed by little sleep, followed by more preparation directly upon waking and leading up to the exam usually leads to very good performance. I get enough adrenaline to get me through the exam. That was never a strategy of mine, it's just something that happened a lot.

    However, for long term retention, I probably didn't do myself a big favour.
  9. Oct 9, 2014 #8
    In my room with cup of tea steeping and loud music (anything from 1812 overture to Darude Sandstorm) blaring.
  10. Oct 10, 2014 #9


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2017 Award

    ahhh so that's why I didn't get too may A's or A+'s ;)

    I found if I really wanted to study well, I had to do it at somewhere like the science library on campus
    I just got too distracted at home ... wife, 2 young kids, and all the goodies in my workshop, just couldn't concentrate

  11. Oct 10, 2014 #10
    I remember my college days when the exam came near that the study hall would be opened all night; if one saw another studying, then he also studied and only left the room if the other guy did first. Silly competition!
  12. Oct 10, 2014 #11


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    I was (almost) never a late night studier.

    My favorite study practice: in front of the TV with a sports program on. Focusing on what I was studying has never been an issue for me, so the TV didn't disrupt my actual train of thought on any individual problem or chapter. What it did was provide some mini breaks between problems/chapters/etc.

    Not a practice that would work for everyone. I tend to have the ability to focus my attention almost to a fault. It's hard for me to hear someone calling my name when I'm focused in on something.

    But the ability to focus on a task has never reached "superpower" level. If I had something on TV that actually had a plot (like a movie), I'd have a hard time returning to my studies from my "mini break".
  13. Oct 10, 2014 #12


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    I get a good 6 to 8 hours every night just about. And by night I mean early morning to early afternoon. I didn't get up until 1:30 pm today. :D
  14. Oct 10, 2014 #13
    I always, always seem to study much better at 2, 3, 4 AM than if I try to do it during the day. Always at my house. I hate dragging the computer to the library.
  15. Oct 10, 2014 #14
    Seem ? that you only do well at night is certain. I once stayed in the dorm, and shared the room with another guy. I couldn't learn anything in the room except how he and his girlfriends made noise every midnight.
  16. Oct 11, 2014 #15
    "Burning the midnight oil", yes. These were the days (and nights)...
  17. Oct 12, 2014 #16


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    All of my books are within arms reach of my bed. Also, the mornings after when I stay up until 3 am, I feel more awake than if I went to bed at 10 pm. Kind of a weird phenomenon, and my friend has experienced this also.
  18. Oct 13, 2014 #17


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    I prefer the library during the week. I usually study with at least one friend and like discussing problems with classmates. On the weekends I'll study at home so I can run processes (read: chores) in parallel (dishes and laundry while I'm working problems).
  19. Oct 13, 2014 #18
    I prefer to work in my room, where my ridiculous number of textbooks (I borrowed most of them from the library, to be fair) live. It's quite quiet, which is good for me, and reasonably big to boot. I do like to study with classmates on occasion though...
  20. Oct 13, 2014 #19
    When I am all alone in a room, I will sleep.
  21. Oct 13, 2014 #20


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    I work in the theory floor of the physics building here because I can't get anything done in my apartment-there are too many distractions like my bed and my guitar. I usually don't like working too late into the night; in previous semesters I've tried to finish everything by like 2am or 3am but with QFT this semester it's been me going to bed at 6am basically every day because of the incredibly tedious HW so I've effectively been living in the physics building. Thankfully it has very comfortable couches to sleep on.
  22. Oct 13, 2014 #21


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    I never thought of trying that during my time in the realms of endless torture.
    OTOH, they'd probably have chucked me out.
  23. Oct 13, 2014 #22
    Nothing is better than early-morning studying.
    Beginning at Dawn is superb !!
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook