To study better, I want to get organized with some of the stuff I see advertised. What should be on my shopping list?

You can go hog wild and find all kinds of furniture and equipment to organize your workspace, but you don't need each and every organizational gadget out there. You just need some basic pieces. You can then consider some of the extra stuff.

A good study space should have the following:

  • A work space (either a desk or table where you can write or draw or solve math problems): The space should have enough room for you to spread out your work so that you can keep the tools you need (paper, books, pen, protractor, calculator, and so on) at your fingertips.
  • A good chair: You want something that's comfortable and supports you with good posture. A bean bag chair, for example, isn't a good study chair. Instead, use an adjustable office chair or other chair that's the right height for your workspace.
  • A place for books: You need a place to store the books you use frequently, such as a dictionary, thesaurus, or atlas. Keep your school books close by so that you don't have to get up and find your backpack when you're working on your homework. Use a small bookcase, desk drawers, or shelves on the wall.
  • Good lighting: You need adequate lighting for you to see your work clearly. Sometimes, an overhead light is not enough, so consider a desk lamp or a floor lamp that shines light where you need it.
  • Outlets: If you use a computer to do your homework or to study, you need access to outlets in which to plug in the computer, even if it's a laptop. You'll also need to plug in your desk lamp and any other equipment that requires electricity.
  • Writing tools and other supplies: You might store your pens, pencils, rulers, protractors, and so on in a desk drawer or in a holder on your desk. Know what tools you need to complete your homework and make sure they're handy.