Friday, May 12, 2017

How to Become a Straight-A Student - Book Review

Straight A, guaranteed

It may be a bit strange to think why I would pick a book like this and read it after so many years of academia. The following were some of the reasons I could come up with,
  • Although I was not a straight-A student at college (a decade earlier), I did score a lot of As (more than 80%). Getting to them was not an easy task, I had to follow a series of shortcuts and techniques. I wanted to check whether some of the techniques appeared in the book or not. The answer was both Yes and No.
  • I am a fan of Cal Newport's work especially his books "Deep Work" and "So good they can't ignore you". So I wanted to finish off his other books. This one apparently he had written around the time I had graduated.
  • I am already in the process of mentoring a lot of young blood towards altering the way they approach education as I personally feel the education system is royally broke. Newport should definitely have thrown light on that. And I could use some of the points in my mentoring sessions for primary and college students. They are enhanced multi folds after I've read this.
  • Education should not be stressful. Instead, it should be fun and adventurous. The starting few pages of the book hooked me up in this direction.
  • I wanted to use some of these techniques in my own work environment as my field (or any field for that matter) requires a good amount of constant learning. Newport's cheat sheets at the end of each chapter are a phenomenal source to fuel one's efficiency!

The core concept of this book is the strategy of "divide and rule". No matter the size of the problem you are trying to solve, the assignment you are trying to submit, the book you are trying to complete - this strategy works out perfectly. Especially in the arena of Academics and in Professional projects as well, the strategies laid out in this book could be applied to rip open any problem. Every student aspiring to get to Straight-A with least effort and maximum efficiency should read this.


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