Mid-terms and exams are a stressful time in the semester, and a large part of having a productive study session is dependent on your environment. It is therefore important to discover what creates your ideal work space in order to maximize your study productivity.

We all have different preferences about our study settings, which is why it’s important to pinpoint what works best for you. Many of us know what tends to distract us and what helps us focus, while others are still struggling to figure it all out.  Here are a few tips that might help:

Noise Level

The noise level is a very important part of your ideal environment because it’s crucial for setting the mood and relates to distraction.

Personally, I prefer some background noise, just so that it is not too quiet. Going to a coffee shop where there is light traffic or a causal study space with little chatter is ideal for me. When I’m in a very quiet area, I like to go to YouTube and play “Coffee Shop Background Noise” through my headphones to create my ideal study space regardless of where I am. Natural lighting, comfortable seats and a light snack also allow me to be in my element. Below are some spots close to Ryerson for those who prefer this type of study environment:

Alternatively, many of my peers prefer absolute silence and feel distracted by the slightest noise. Using noise-cancelling headphones or staying in the silent spaces of the library is a great spot for them.  For many, it is ideal to have a study space with minimal traffic, no noise and natural lighting. Below are some suitable spots for those who prefer quiet places:

TRSM is also offering Pop-Up Study Space at TRS 2-119 and TRS 2-129 from April 12-20 and April 23-27.

Time of Day

The time of day you study is very important as well. Studying early in the morning is what I find most effective. When you start your day earlier you have more time to space out your activities, classes and study times. Studying in the evening is also possible, but not the most effective since most of us are tired at that time.


Through a little trial and error, you can figure out what suits you the best. It is great to experiment with new spaces and environments to see how you can maximize your productivity.

Posted by Aysha Malik

Aysha is a 2nd year Business Management student who is pursuing a major in Marketing and Minor in Law and Business. She is currently a Peer Academic Coach where she has the opportunity to provide students with academic support. She is passionate about fostering student success and hopes to continue doing so throughout her life.