Browsing through the archives here, I have seen many, "how do you study for upper math?" threads. This is not so much one of those thread, but rather a poll question. When approaching a new subject in mathematics, do you... (a) Master the chapter first (this includes develop a deep understanding of the theorems, trying to prove them yourself before glancing at the proof, constructing examples and counterexamples, explaining concepts very carefully in your own words, etc, etc), then attempt the exercises, or (b) Try to work the chapter and the exercises in tandem. I have notice that I used both. Sometimes I will learn the first defintion/propostion of a chapter, then find some appropiate exercises. But, I feel that I have had less fustration using (a) since I have been acquinted with the material for longer. I would enjoy to read your views. Thanks!