How I Ranked 1st at Monash University: 4-step Framework | Summary and Q&A

August 23, 2023
Justin Sung
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How I Ranked 1st at Monash University: 4-step Framework


The speaker shares four uncommon strategies that helped them achieve academic excellence in their master's program, along with the importance of not compromising on essential aspects of learning.

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Key Insights

  • 🥇 Aiming high allows us to think and act differently, pushing us to adopt behaviors and characteristics of successful individuals in order to study smarter, not harder.
  • 📚 Cramming early, before the semester begins, allows us to work through material faster and make connections between concepts that may otherwise be missed.
  • ➕ Understanding the timing of learning and focusing on relevant information at each stage improves efficiency and retention of knowledge.
  • 🧠 Effective learning involves consolidating information as we learn it, rather than attempting to memorize and consolidate afterward.
  • 🔍 Being resourceful and strategic with the use of available resources, such as lecturers, can save time and provide guidance in complex topics.
  • 🚫 Not compromising on non-negotiables, such as studying ahead and making educated guesses with limited information, is key to achieving goals.
  • 💪 Developing self-regulated learning skills enables us to figure things out independently and use expertise when necessary, showing higher-level thinking.
  • ❗️ Seeking validation for why certain tasks are difficult rather than actively seeking help can hinder progress.


I recently graduated at the top of my class with my master of education program at Monash University which is one of the top ranked universities in the world and in this video I'm going to be sharing with you four kind of uncommon things that I did that allowed me to place first and at the end of this video I'm also going to be sharing with you one... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: How did the speaker use the technique of aiming high to improve their academic performance?

The speaker aimed higher than they thought they were capable of achieving, challenging themselves to think and behave like an elite student. This helped them identify and break bad habits and evaluate their study methods critically. It allowed them to study smarter rather than harder, ultimately improving their academic performance.

Q: How did the speaker effectively use the strategy of early cramming?

The speaker set aside two weeks at the beginning of each semester to go through all the content for their papers. They utilized available resources, such as lecture objectives and textbooks, to gain a general understanding of the material. By cramming early, they created a sense of urgency that allowed them to work through the content faster and make connections between different concepts.

Q: How did the speaker approach the process of learning new information?

The speaker emphasized the importance of building prior knowledge and creating connections between new information and existing knowledge. They advised learners to start with a big picture understanding and gradually build complexity and detail. By picking up relevant information and creating anchor points, they ensured that their brain saw the relevance of the new information, leading to better retention and understanding.

Q: How did the speaker utilize lecturers effectively?

The speaker went beyond asking basic questions and instead focused on higher-level discussions with lecturers. They presented their own synthesized models or frameworks for feedback and validation. By leveraging the expertise of lecturers, they saved time on their own research and received valuable input to refine their understanding.

Q: What was the one thing the speaker did not do that many students often do?

The speaker did not compromise on the non-negotiables of their learning process. They did not look for excuses or reasons why they couldn't follow their strategies, but instead found solutions and made the most of the resources available. They emphasized the importance of having a solutions mentality and not seeking validation for why studying is difficult.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The speaker graduated with top honors in their Master of Education program, using unconventional methods and strategies.

  • They aimed high, thinking about how an elite student would approach their studies, and reframed their thinking accordingly.

  • The speaker practiced early cramming, utilizing resources available beforehand to gain a comprehensive understanding of the content.

  • They were resourceful in their use of lecturers, seeking help for higher-level questions and discussing synthesizations of complex topics.

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