The two very simple secrets to student success

I can hardly believe it. After six years of working alongside students from both high school and university, I have come to a startling discovery. It’s one that effectively renders¬†BA: An Insider’s Guide –¬†the entire book that I wrote on effective study skills – obsolete. Seriously, if you haven’t bought it yet, don’t even bother.

Why would I actively dissuade you from buying my product? Well, because I’ve just realised that a student’s success actually has nothing to do with how many classes you attend, how early you start your essays or how hard you study for your exams. All that it depends on is your ability to use two things. Two very simple, cheap, commonplace things.

To be a top student, you don’t need to know how to focus in lectures, read academic writing, or schmooze your lecturers. You don’t need to know how to use textbooks or study planners or fancy online learning tools. All you need to know how to use is: a) a pencil case and b) a semi-colon. The correct usage of these two items is the common link between all of the top students who I have ever known. I have years of observational evidence to back up my theory. I’m amazed that I haven’t discovered it earlier.

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Budget for fun

With all this talk about recessions, debt and massive loans, it’s easy to convince yourself that students shouldn’t spend money on anything fun. Budgeting is great, but the whole point of it is to make sure that you can afford the things that you need.

You need fun. Everyone does, unless they want to become resentful and unmotivated. You need, therefore, to budget for fun.

How big your fun budget is depends, of course, on how much money you’ve got coming in. But everyone can afford to put a little aside each week. And no one should have to miss out on that long-awaited gig, that first Sevens weekend, or that summer road trip with friends just because they’re a poor student.

Budget for fun. And if that fails, beg, borrow or barter for it. Just make sure that it happens.