First semester is coming to an end which means winter break is only a few weeks away. You’re looking forward to spending time with family during the holidays, rekindling relationships with old friends again, and most importantly, not having to deal with any schoolwork for a month!
However, the only thing holding you back from enjoying these things is every college student’s least favorite time of the year—finals week. Finals week consists of lengthy term papers, strenuous exams, minimal sleep, and for some, “all-nighters”. Preparing for finals can be very time consuming, but by using some of these tips, you can minimize a lot of the stress and still do well.
The first thing people want to do when studying for finals is put a hold on any activities non-school related. Everything that is done for leisure should be stopped and your time should be spent solely studying, right? Well, think again.
Studying should consume a majority of your time, but you should still stick with your daily routines. If you go to the gym regularly, you should continue doing so. If you’re a runner, go for a jog around campus to wake yourself up. One thing I really enjoy doing is playing basketball. My friends and I will pick a time every day during finals week where we collectively take a break from studying to play pick-up games in the McGinley gymnasium.
Form study groups. Some people can’t study in groups and prefer to work by themselves, which is fine, but form study groups to reduce the workload. Finals require you to know information from multiple chapters in a textbook. Rather than waste your time re-reading and looking for information, divide up the chapters amongst your group members. This way you save yourself hours of time and it becomes much easier to study. Just make sure your group consists of students who regularly attend class and desire an “A” as badly as you do.
Reward yourself and set incentives. Personally, I love listening to music but when I study it’s a distraction. Therefore, I tell myself, “When I memorize this material, then I can take a break and just listen to music.” If you tend to have constant food cravings, make plans with a group of friends to go out to eat at a nice restaurant after a long day of studying. Setting incentives will motivate you when it comes to understanding information that may be dry and dense.
I also strongly recommend limiting social media. Avoid always having your Twitter or Facebook open. I can’t remember the countless number of times I needed to get something done and then got distracted because of something interesting I saw on my timeline. Generally, a majority of your friends are ranting about how much they hate finals anyways, which certainly won’t help your cause.
Lastly, try to get a decent amount of sleep. Don’t do yourself a disservice after all your time spent studying and be exhausted on test day. Don’t become dependent on energy drinks because eventually you will crash. Get a goodnight sleep and go into your exam refreshed and confident.
Good luck, study hard, and remember: winter break is around the corner!