Some people have the false impression that Rationals are always brilliant in any field. (A thought that is particularly reassuring right now, considering that Barack Obama, or new President-Elect, is a Rational personality!) Although they are often good students, Rationals may slack off in class if they do not find the subject matter compelling. The key is finding ways to make the information relevant to the Rational student; once engaged, Rationals will go to great lengths to learn and retain the material. There are 4 distinct types of Rationals: Fieldmarshal, Mastermind, Inventor and Architect. Does one of them sound like you?
Jung, a Rational Fieldmarshal, did quite well in some business classes, but struggled with others. In his junior year, when he decided to pursue an MBA after graduation, Jung knew he would need to polish his study habits to earn top grades. He asked how he could improve his study skills to prepare for graduate school. When Fieldmarshals study for a test or quiz, they do best to alternate between studying quietly and discussing the subject with others. Quiet study gives you a chance to collect information that your peers may not have. When possible, mark text areas deemed important, or dates to be memorized. Conversations can also help to solidify knowledge and gauge retention of the material. If a dialogue with fellow students is not possible, it can be helpful to discuss the material with your parents-even if they don’t know a lot about the topic.
Craig, a Rational Mastermind, was very studious and enjoyed the complexity of problems found in Environmental Science. His bugaboo was Chemistry. He particularly hated the lab smells and thought it had little application to his goal of working in governmental policy. Craig knew if he didn’t get at least a B in the course, it could affect his job eligibility, so he talked to a counselor about overcoming his aversion and getting a decent grade. Masterminds usually apply willpower to learn what they want to learn. They want to know things in depth before putting ideas into operation. Motivation for things they dislike can be difficult. First, they require a quiet space to study. Try to think of useful applications for the course information, even if it doesn’t apply to your area of interest. It is helpful to first read, then write, and lastly, practice (or at least consider) practical application and examples. Applying information from inside the brain into real world situations solidifies the material, helping to improve both lab performance and test scores.
Charlotte, a Rational Inventor, aced her economics class, but got bogged down in detailed accounting courses. She needed help. Tips for Inventors: The Inventor is naturally creative and excellent at finding new ways to think about things. This asset can be a problem when studying exacting subjects, or when it is necessary to parrot back specific data or definitions. Study time should include a combination of quiet study and discussion. Saying certain key phrases aloud multiple times will help those phrases to come up automatically. Also, be careful not to over-think the test material. Be sure to judge whether the professor wants a repetition of lecture material, or if there is a bonus for reinterpretation before engaging in independent, free-wheeling thinking.
Trina, a Rational Architect, was studying Architecture. She really loved design and had the patience to construct intricate drawings. She sought advice because she was not satisfied with her performance in physics and math classes. Architects do best with a quiet place to work and study. It’s useful to try to determine which pieces of information will likely be on the test. Having trouble memorizing the material? Try writing the words or formula on a piece of paper. Repeatedly solving the same 10 problems helps solidify knowledge of the overall pattern, which can then be applied to other problems. When preparing for an oral report, practice talking out the study material to ensure a smooth, confident presentation. Trina should also be prepared to give concrete examples of concepts; this demonstrates an understanding of the study material.