Many have asked me this singular question:
"I find study materials difficult, the language is difficult and it is dry and thus Im unable to study the study material, what should I do?"
Simple answer: Study it anyways, the fruits are great!
Study materials for some subjects like Direct Taxes or Indirect Taxes are a waste, I have broached upon it.
Some smart students say to me, "Hey, I find Studymaterial is the best for all subjects."
These very-same smart students would be reading at home some other reference book.Also, the institute would not give any goldmedal for speaking thus in their favour.
Whenever you find any injustice in any organization,speak out at the first given chance.Dont sleep over it.Our country has become like this, because of this "sleeping over" by the intelligensia.
Study materials have no doubt lot to improve.Atleast now, they are giving in bookformat.In my days, they used to give in studymodule booklet form and with worst paper quality and print with lot of errors and unavailability of important study materials when students need most.
ICAI has come a long way from those old days.They now print decent book type of notes.
However, the language or presentation is horrible.The illustrations show strange methods of coming to the answer, which becomes apparent after racking one's heads for long as there seems to be no logic.
However, for some subjects like Auditing,MICS,Corporate Law,etc Study material is more than enough.
However, one gets bored with the boring style in which the study material has been presented so the need for one additional reference book.
Also, some reference books are excellent.Ex: TN Manoharan's direct taxes book.This book is superlative when compared to the dry study material both in easy language and presentation.
Now, how should one study the study material?
I used the following approach:
1. Have a white sheet of paper while studying a subject.Keep writing in whatever handwriting you have(dont make efforts to beautify your handwriting) and make scribbles, whatever small words or numbers while learning.Dont write notes but just keep scribbling and doodling on the sheet.(This will imprint concepts on your subconscious mind)
2.Keep a notebook(preferably unruled) handy and start jotting down jargons and important points from this scribble sheet.(this is for future reference).
3. Throw the scribble sheet away after each study session.
4. While learning use mnemonics(memory techniques).Dont shy away from it and think it is for school children.Infact, I learnt deductions chapter in 1/2 day using memory techniques(which included even setting the dreary deductions to tunes from Pink Flyod, by the way!Hehe!)
5. Use a mindmap to summarize the whole chapter or a big concept.Use mind maps a lot and learn how to draw a mindmap, it helps greatly.
6. Underline whatever is important in studymaterial.Better a dirty study material with lot of underlinings and material learnt than a beautiful untouched study material.By underlining and referring from the notebook you have prepared, it helps during revision time.
7.Dont overplan, there is huge possibility of it failing.
8. If you dont understand a line or two underline it and ask someone(need not be a colleague or teacher, literally anyone who can understand).Seek help, dont feel shy.Feel shy at your peril.Put a question mark next to it, and then sqash the question mark with your newfound understanding, which you scribble just next to it legibly, so that in the end while revising you will know what the heck it was.
9. use colours in the "black and white' study material to underline important points or write something.Use your colour scheme.It aids memory.
10. Shun people who will laugh at your antics to learn.Let them laugh, show them the results and then their jaws would drop to the ground!
11. Dont consider Study material(or any single book ) as a bible.Learn to use descretion and judge properly.
12. Use VAK attack to learn from study material.VAK attack nuerolingusitically means Visual,Auditory and Kinesthetic.Research on what I mean by this from Google or some resource.I wont spoonfeed you here!
13. Repeat the study material again and again to keep it in memory.
14. Have dictionary(ies) handy along with thesaurus.Learn atleast 10 new english words as a hobby(atleast from the study material!).Dont say, "I dont know english properly and the language is tough"Unless you venture into new things, neuron connections in brain is not made and you don grow intelligent.
15. Dont fear the study material, play with it like an old mate!
Bets of luck! and God Bless!