A quiet, distraction-free space. A comfortable chair near a sunny window. All of your textbooks, notes, and flashcards in a row. Highlighters in 10 different colors. What does your optimal study set-up look like?
We’ve been inspired by #StudyTok, a TikTok trend that showcases the habits, workspaces, and snacks that students around the world lean on to do their best work, and Study With Me, which highlights stories of students who are laser-focused in their studies. If you need some inspiration before your next assessment or essay, check out these TikTok videos for motivation, study tips, and takeaways to create a more effective and insuring learning space.
1. Set the mood
A well-organized study space can increase productivity and concentration—which makes studying something you’ll look forward to. Add art, photos, and personal touches to make your desk your own. Popular #StudyTok videos showcase everything from trendy desktop wallpaper to well-stocked pen cups. Gather the things you need to succeed—like books, sticky notes, and writing utensils. Music can help you study, so queue up your favorite playlist or radio station.
For desk inspiration, check out this #StudyTok of averiebishop’s set-up, which includes a cotton-candy pink keyboard, a gaming PC, an iPad Pro for handwritten notes, and some inspirational artwork.
2. Indulge a little
According to many “TikTokers,” having three drinks for your study session is “the height of luxury”—one for fun, one for hydration, and one for energy. Fueling your work with a snack, sweet treat, or coffee can help keep you motivated. Some studies show that certain foods, especially those that contain caffeine, sugar, and healthy fats, can even aid in memory and concentration.
3. Choose the optimal study schedule
One advantage of being a non-traditional student is the ability to embrace flexibility in your schedule. For example, if you’re a night owl, embrace it—and create a cozy atmosphere for your late-night study sessions. For example, MaisyLeighs creates a cozy study vibe with soft lighting, pastel colors, and an organized workspace.
Whether you prefer to study early in the morning, late at night, or somewhere in between, scheduling your study time in blocks can help avoid burnout. The Pomodoro technique is probably the most well-known method, named after a tomato-shaped timer that the inventor used to track their study sprints.
4 . #StudyWithMe: Find a study buddy
Studying doesn’t have to be a solo activity. Schedule time with a classmate or friend to study together. Even if you’re not studying the same topic, just being in the same space can increase focus and keep you on task for the duration of your study session.
Want to mimic the vibe of a co-working session without the hassle of coordinating your schedule with a friend? Check out Study With Me YouTube, a genre of videos meant to guide you through a study session. Here’s a starting point: This study session transports you to Glasgow, Ireland, for a quiet, rain-filled three hours of work time. The popularity of these study with me videos may be backed by science; some studies show that background noise helps with concentration and may drown out other potential distractions.
5. Use tech to take notes
In a TikTok that’s been viewed more than 8 million times, snehageorge shows us how to take notes on Apple Notes using an iPad. This method allows you to convert handwriting to text, do calligraphy, and more. There are countless note-taking apps—such as GoodNotes, Notion, Evernote, and more. The Zapier blog has a great resource to help find the right note-taking tool for you.
6. Grab a whiteboard for practice
Find ways to test yourself and work through problems. For example, one high school senior who uses whiteboards to work through her AP®* Calc homework. Having tools on hand for practicing problem sets, quizzing yourself on questions, or mapping complex concepts can make studying feel more like a game.
7. Keep your eye on the prize
One of the most dominant themes of #StudyTok is to focus on your goals. Students showcase their endurance for long study sessions, elaborate note-taking, and organizational skills—all as motivation to keep working towards their learning goals. Remember why you want to learn, and what you’re working towards—and design your study habits to support your goals.
More #StudyTok Tips for Students
*AP® and Advanced Placement® are registered trademarks of the College Board. Used with permission.