Students discuss productive living space on campus

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Whether or not you live in the dorms, your own apartment or with your parents, finding a productive environment to study in can be difficult.

Having a productive living space can help keep you focused on your studying, which in turn can help you maintain good grades.

“I recommend the library for studying,” said Vicki Black, Dixie State College librarian. “However, that’s not always possible. Students need to create their own productive study environment.”

The first step in creating a productive living space is to eliminate distractions. With technology today, this may seem like an impossible task, but by turning off the television or forgoing Facebook, you’ll find it a little bit easier to focus on your homework.

“By eliminating all the distractions around you these days—your phone, Facebook, Twitter—you’re more likely to focus on what really matters,” said David Allen, a senior psychology major from Las Vegas.  

Technology can be used for many productive things, but unless you have to do your homework online, when it comes to studying, it’s more distracting than helpful.

The second step in creating a productive living environment is to keep your space clean. Throw away the trash, organize your papers and keep your pens in a separate area. The cleaner a space is, the better. You can focus more on your homework and less on that stack of papers that is just lying around.

“I notice that whenever my desk is dirty, I’m much more interested in finding out what’s on my desk than doing my statistics work,” Allen said.

Another step in creating a productive living environment is lighting. The amount and type of lighting you have around you while studying affects your learning and retention.

While bright light is better    for a productive space, florescent lighting isn’t.  With their intensely bright and flickering light, florescent bulbs are thought to cause effects on the brain that make it hard to focus.  These possible side effects of florescent lighting make natural lighting the best possible light for studying.

“Bright, natural lights are almost always better for students,” said Glen Blakely, DSC professor of art. “You aren’t causing the brain to stress with intensely bright lights, but you aren’t straining your eyes in dim lighting.”

Achieving a productive living environment that caters to your homework needs can be difficult, but maintaining good study habits is just as easy as maintaining bad ones—it just takes self-discipline.

“Students don’t always realize that your environment can make or break your studying habits,” Black said. “When it comes to college, learning comes first; a productive environment will help you retain the information you’ve been trying so hard to study.”