Almost every college student has to deal with staying up as late as necessary to finish their homework. Although it does vary for each student, most students are night owls, while morning larks are generally people over the age of 60, according to The Body Clock Guide to Better Health written by Michael Smolensky.
The body is better equipped to study later at night than in the morning because blood sugar is at its lowest in the morning, which makes it harder for students to focus on their study work. As a result, they will easily fall back asleep. Students tend to retain information most effectively between 11 a.m. and 9:30 p.m., according to a study conducted by the University of Nevada-Reno.
“It depends on the person,” Plattsburgh State sophomore marketing major Maria Flores said. “If I have to speak for myself, it is better for me to study at night.”
Flores said studying at night can help her retain information she learns better, and it gives her the ability to digest and process the material she just learned.
“I often study after 5 p.m., and I am usually up until 2 a.m.,” she said. “It becomes my study habit, so I can study at night better than during the day.”
Flores also said she has many classes throughout the day, so she has more free time in the evening to get her homework done.
“Studying at night also helps you focus better,” PSUC senior nursing major My Chung said. “If you are a night owl, it is good because you do not have a lot of distractions like during the day.”
People are more active and louder during the day. Therefore, Chung said studying at night can benefit students and help them focus on their school work better.
“I study at night, but I do not pull all-nighters,” she said. “I would say if I need to read, I would read in the morning, but if I need to memorize and do my assignments, I will do it in the evening.”
Chung said that becomes her own study habit. What she does is read during the day, go to classes, listen to lectures and ask questions. Then in the evening, she starts to do her assignment and online quizzes on her own.
Although there are benefits such as less distraction and more focus for night owls students, Chung said it is still better for everybody to have a good sleep at night. By getting enough sleep, students can learn and have a better memory. They can naturally become more efficient and alert, according to Be Brain Fit, an online resource for information about maintaining and improving cognitive and mental health based on the best available scientific research.
“If you prefer to study in the evening, try to prioritize your work and assignments,” Chung said. “Manage your time better, and use it effectively.”
It is recommended that people should work for 52 minutes and break for 17 minutes, according to The Atlantic.
“I choose to study at night because there are usually fewer people in the library than during the day,” PSUC senior English major Cassandra Day said. “I often study any time after 6 p.m.”
Day also said she benefits from studying at night because the library is quieter and less busy around 8:30 p.m.
“There are also more tables opening usually,” she said.
Studies have found that younger students tend to be better suited to study at night than older students, according to Open Colleges, one of Australia’s leading online educators.
Everybody has his or her own learning style. Whether a person is a morning lark or a night owl, maintaining good sleep is important, especially for college students.
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