Your study space

To maximise your chances of studying effectively at home or on campus, consider what your ideal study space consists of. Your study is likely to be ineffective with distractions or discomfort, unless you prefer to work surrounded by white noise (it’s possible). Taking the time to create the right study environment for yourself is worthwhile. It will help you to concentrate, and ultimately have an impact on your study.

Consider these factors.


It’s important to know how noise levels affect you.

  • Do you need total silence, or can you tolerate background noise.
  • Do you prefer to listen to music? Do you learn best by talking through your notes?

If your family or housemates can’t leave you alone at home, then consider studying elsewhere. Libraries are reliably quiet places, with various options for those requiring absolute silence to study.


Take an honest look at what distracts you in your environment:

  • Do your housemates encourage you into a night of drinking when you have study to do?
  • Does your family watch TV at a ridiculous volume?
  • Does YouTube or cleaning when you should be studying?
    (Sort that one out now: read up on procrastination)

If you answered ‘Yes’ to any of these distractions, remove them from your study space. That may mean choosing a space away from them. 


A comfortable space will improve your capacity to learn. If sitting for an hour at a desk causes you physical pain, then look for an alternative. It could be a beanbag, a sit-stand desk, a couch, a kneel-chair, an ergonomic chair. Think twice about using one you found on the side of the road. Also consider temperature. Sitting over a heating vent may be nice for a while but will soon distract you. Similarly, feeling cold to the bone is not conducive to sitting still and concentrating.


Having access to certain facilities will help your study. A rumbling stomach or caffeine addiction will surely distract you, as will a sudden need to find the bathroom. Studying somewhere that provides these basic amenities, like a library, is a good option if you cannot study at home.