Editor’s note. This article is written by Elana Goodwin from Uloop.
While there are plenty of places to study on campus, sometimes an off-campus study spot will make you more efficient. A change in scenery may help increase your concentration during studying and getting off-campus is a great way to do that.
So without further ado, here are the four best off-campus study spots to consider the next time you need to study for a test.
1. A public library
Most students turn to the various on-campus libraries to study, finding a nook, cubby, table, or room to set up their materials and review. Universities tend to have a main library, as well as other smaller libraries that may be more specific as to the types of books they hold or the student population they serve. These on-campus libraries are great options for those students who want to stay closer to campus and the dorms, or study in between classes.
If you have more time on your hands to study though, a great off-campus study spot to explore is the local public library. Chances are, the public library may not be too far away from campus, making it a perfect off-campus locale to study in. You won’t be competing with other college students for a place to sit and you’re basically guaranteed quiet since libraries have a sort of “keep it down” kind of policy.
By going to an off-campus library, you also don’t run the risk of bumping into people you know and having them distract you, and probably won’t have to search as much for the perfect place to set up shop to study. So before your next test, scout out your local public library, bring your class materials, and settle in for a productive study session.
2. Coffee shops/cafes
Besides a public library, you can also go off-campus and find yourself a nice coffee shop or cafe to study in. These types of places can be a great location for studying, especially if you're a caffeine addict or someone who likes to snack on something while studying. Your nearby Starbucks may be a bit too noisy and crowded for productive studying, so expand your search to smaller, non-franchise coffeehouses or ones that operate locally.
Most bookstores have some sort of cafe inside that usually has seating available, making it a great place to study in. You can also look into off-campus restaurants that are close to your college, as they're probably bigger spaces with ample seats and tables.
That said, a restaurant might be somewhat busy and noisy as people come in and out, so if you're heading there to study try to choose a time that'll allow you to miss the lunch and dinner rushes.
3. The park
If you attend college in a more temperate climate or are planning to study during a warmer season, try heading to a local park to find your perfect study spot. Studying outside will allow you to not only soak in some rays or just take in the fresh air, but also to find you're more incentivized to study well as you can then take advantage of all the park offers and truly enjoy being outdoors.
If you are planning to head to a nearby park to study, you'll definitely want to check the weather forecast since you don't want to head there to study if there's a chance of rain, and will want to bring a jacket if it's going to cool down some while you're there.
Additionally, bringing a towel or blanket and some snacks, along with whatever supplies and materials you need to study is a good idea, so you can really set yourself up comfortably to study.
4. Off-campus housing
Whether it’s an apartment or house that belongs to a friend, study group members, or is your own home, studying in some sort of off-campus housing can be a great choice for a study spot. If you're headed to a friend's house or apartment or one that belongs to a member of your study group, make sure you stay focused.
Don't get distracted by pictures hanging on the walls or the lure of Netflix. Set yourself up in the living room or a bedroom that offers you and whoever you're there with enough space so each of you can lay out your notes and textbooks and be comfortable for a study session.
If you're studying in your own off-campus house or apartment, you'll also want to keep distractions to a minimum and keep some snacks and a drink nearby so you don't have an excuse to get up until after you've studied a substantial amount.
So before you just head to the campus library to study for your next exam, consider looking into one of these great off-campus study spots — the change in scenery just might boost your productivity!
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