Anki: A smart studying tool

In a previous studying tips post, I mentioned finding a method of spaced repetition that works for you.  Start to incorporate spaced repetition into your studying habits as early in your academic career as you can!  It becomes a habit and can actually be really gratifying once you start to remember information more easily.

I use Anki.  You can download it for free on your computer here.  The iPhone app costs ~$25, but I highly recommend buying it so you can flip through flashcards whenever you have idle time (i.e. waiting in line).

My tutorial will be VERY simple.  I will share the two methods of making flashcards that I believe afford the most bang for your buck.  I highly recommend watching videos (especially Jamie’s on TheStrivetoFit YouTube channel and med student Scott Blaine’s which also talks about OneNote) for step-by-step guides.

  1. Cloze fill-in-the-blank flashcards: A) type both the key term/question and what you want to be able to remember about it into the “Text” box, B) select what you want to be able to recall and press the […] button, and C) click “Add” at the bottom — and you’re done!  You can also add multiple blanks to each card by highlighting multiple phrases separately and clicking the same […] button.  Same numbers after “c” will create multiple blanks within the same flashcard; different numbers will create separate flashcards from multiple blanks.cloze
  2. Image Occlusion for diagrams and charts: A) download the add-on here and install it into your desktop program, B) copy the image onto your clipboard and click the icon on the far right in the above screen to get the screen below, C) drag the rectangle shape to box out areas you would like to be able to recall, and D) click any of the three options you see at the bottom depending on how much information you would like to view when finishing up studying each flashcard.control system.jpg

Hope this helps. 🙂  Good luck studying!  And remember, it’s not enough just to make the flashcards.  You must also study them every day.

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