Returning to study as a mature student might seem daunting, particularly if you have been out of education for a while. In this post I will go through some of the best study guides that can help you return to education more “smoothly”.
I have already shared in another article 5 practical activities you can easily do to prepare for university as a mature student. I would really suggest you have a read through that, it might be very helpful!
Many of the (future) mature students who read my blog have asked me to follow up on that article by suggesting some study skills guides; (thank you all for your feedback!!) As I had to attend an access course, I did not really need to use a study guide; at least not at the beginning.
However, from what my readers are saying access courses are not as common as they used to be. Many mature students are able to return to education in other ways; some are accepted to university straight away; others compensate their time out of education with work experience.
Moreover, many institutions nowadays do not have strict enrolment requirements, particularly for online learning. All this justifies this anxiety feeling of “I haven’t studied or written an essay in years, how will I cope?”.
Best study guides for mature students
So I had to do a bit of digging and ask around various mature student communities to put this list together. As usual, I will leave a direct link to Amazon for each so that you can check their contents, prices etc; (as an Amazon affiliate my blog might earn a commission.) Please note: this list might change as I receive more recommendations; please let me know if you have any as well and I will add it to the list!
The Return to Study Handbook: Study Skills for Mature, Distance, and Workplace Learners.
The Mature Student’s Handbook: 47 (Macmillan Study Skills);
The Mature Student’s Guide to Writing (Palgrave Study Skills); focused on writing skills.
Effective Notetaking: (Study Skills), by Fiona McPherson
The Mature Student’s Study Guide: 2nd edition: Essential Skills for Those Returning to Education or Distance Learning
Study guides, contribute to the list and help other mature students!
I did not personally use those guides, I guess the access course was mine. In all honesty, it kind of refreshed my study skills, from reading to writing. However, if I could choose I would probably start university straight away without going through an access course.
I believe I would be able to pick up things from there, anyone could. Nevertheless, I did use some other guides to improve academic writing skills later on; but that it’s another story you probably don’t need to worry too much about for now.