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Teach Yourself How to Learn


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Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgements
  • Introduction
  • 1) My Journey: I Was Once in Your Shoes
  • 2) Why Don't All Students Already Know How to Learn?
  • 3) Metacognition: What It Is and How It Can Turbocharge Your Learning
  • 4) The Power of Bloom's Taxonomy and the Study Cycle
  • 5) Metacognitive Learning Strategies at Work
  • 6) Why Your Mindset About Intelligence Matters
  • 7) How Your Emotions Affect Your Motivation and Learning
  • 8) How You Can Boost Your Motivation, Positive Emotions, and Learning
  • 9) Time Management, Test Taking, and Stress Reduction
  • 10) Try the Strategies and Have Fun!
  • Appendix A: Compilation of Strategies for Students
  • Appendix B: Books and Links Recommended for Students
  • Appendix C: Learning Strategies Inventory
  • Appendix D: Dramatic Individual Student Improvement
  • Appendix E: Selected Student Feedback
  • Appendix F: Study Tools
  • References

About the Author

Saundra Yancy McGuire, has been teaching chemistry and working in the area of learning and teaching support for over forty-five years. In 2007, she was recognized for excellence in mentoring with a Presidential Award presented in a White House Oval Office Ceremony. She is an elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Chemical Society, and the Council of Learning Assistance and Developmental Education Associations. In 2013 she retired as assistant vice chancellor and professor of chemistry at Louisiana State University, and in 2017 she was inducted into the LSU College of Science Hall of Distinction. She is now Director Emerita of the LSU Center for Academic Success, which was named the National College Learning Center Association outstanding learning center in 2004. Saundra has presented her widely acclaimed faculty development workshops at over 300 institutions in eight countries. Saundra received her B.S. degree, magna cum laude, from Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA, her Master's degree from Cornell University, and her Ph.D. from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, where she received the Chancellor's Citation for Exceptional Professional Promise.


"It is incredibly important to make sure your home schooler hasaccess to quality curricula--regardless of whether you are doing traditionalhome schooling, unit home schooling, unschooling, or some combination of theabove. However, one area of study that is frequently neglected in homeschooling programs is the systematic development of study skills to supportindependent learning. While many students--and especially those following lesstraditional home schooling paths--such as unschooling--develop these skillsorganically as an adjunct to their content explorations, understanding thatthey have them and why they work is an essential component when it comes totransitioning students to college-level learning.Teach Students How to Learn and Teach Yourself How to Learn arecompanion volumes: the second covers the same material as the first, but for areadership of students rather than instructors. Both volumes are extremelyeffective at providing practical and concrete techniques for improving studyhabits and learning mindsets. McGuire's insights are based on both rigorouseducational research and years of experience as a learning support specialist.

At first glance, Saundra McGuire's books might not seem like an obviouschoice for homeschooling parents and students. The books are designed withcollege undergraduate students and their faculty in mind, and are designed tohelp students understand the skills that will result in better collegeperformance. However, McGuire's books are invaluable to home schoolers becausethey provides the whys and hows for the most important homeschooling skill outthere: independent learning and thinking."--Jennifer Harrison "Read, Write, PERFECT"
"Teach Yourself How to Learn can be a life changer. This book provides students with a toolkit for learning. Reliable and evidence-based techniques are described that every student can use. Students will learn about diagnosing the shortcomings in their own study techniques. To shore up those shortcomings, students will learn about effective ways to learn and build understanding. Students will find out how to increase comprehension of reading assignments by taking steps to engage in active reading, to increase understanding by posing and answering deep level questions, and to increase learning by studying as if you were going to teach the assigned material to the class. With this book, students will gain the insights and concrete techniques that are the foundations of effective learning and studying.

No less important, the book is written so that students will want to read it. The information is conveyed without jargon and in a style that relates to students' experiences. I believe that students who read this book will be able to optimize their educational experiences and become enthusiastic and effective life-long learners."--Mark McDaniel "Co-author of Make It Stick: The Science of Successful Learning, Center for Integrative Research on Cognition, Learning, and Education, Washington University in St. Louis"

"Dr. Saundra McGuire has extended her expertise directly to students in this companion to Teach Students How to Learn. After impacting faculty and academic support professionals' approach to helping students learn best, she now introduces and guides students to deeper understanding of concepts at different levels. By reframing their approach to studying in college using her methods, they can become better motivated, manage their study time effectively, earn higher grades, and develop successful college careers."--Johanna Dvorak, PhD, Director Emerita, Educational Support Services "University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Educational Research Consulting, LLC"
"This book is awesome!!! I really wish that I had this book when I was younger. We spend such a huge portion of our lives learning but no one ever taught us how.

When I read the section on the study cycle, I was surprised to find that I actually use that technique for pera/rehearsal. I always preview my score before and then afterward I fill in the blanks and write down the staging etc. Why did I simply not think to do that in college for, you know, everything! This is so fantastic and I'm going to tell everyone I know, especially folks with kids."--Michelle Trainor, soprano "Boston Lyric Opera"

I was having aconversation yesterday with my new colleague here at Brown, and shetold me a story about a student she worked with. [She] runs our academic tutoring programs at the Sheridan Center andover a year ago a student came to her after failing her chemistry midterm.[She] helped her with a number of resources, including Teach Yourself, andthis student ended the semester with a B in the course and an A in the nextsemester Chemistry course. The student's instructor was stunned by herturnaround and asked what she had done. The student pointed to TeachYourself and now the instructor has added it the syllabus as a recommendedresource for succeeding in the course.--Eric Kaldor, Sheridan Center for Teaching and Learning "Brown University"

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