Study & Wellness Strategies for Finals
It’s that time of year. The semester has flown by and finals are just around the corner. Students who are feeling unprepared or overwhelmed should take the time to read the tips below.
Find the Right Environment
Some students study more successfully with a partner for accountability and a different perspective on the material, while some people may be better able to focus by studying alone. Students should consider whether music helps them or is distracting. Different settings for studying, such as the dorm, the library or a coffee shop, may also make a difference. Students should find a place that works for them and allows them to avoid as many distractions as possible.
Find Out What Study Methods Work Best
Studying doesn’t have to be just reading and copying notes. Different strategies work for different people. Think about whether lecture notes, lists and glossary style notes, or flashcards might help the most. Students who have a lot of chapters to study should look at the chapter summaries and any review questions provided first. This can help narrow down on which chapters they may need to spend more time. Students should use any study guides or PowerPoints provided in their classes to help them determine what will be the focus of the final exam.
Use Resources and Ask Questions
Professors want you to succeed. Students who are concerned that they may not understand what will be expected on the final should take the opportunity to ask. If current study habits aren’t working, students should try something new. There are resources available on campus, such as Student Success and the Writing Studio, for students who need help with coursework and papers.
It’s Okay to be Overwhelmed
Finals exams are a stressful time. Students who are overwhelmed or anxious should not beat themselves up. Connecting with classmates and peers can help. It’s likely that they have some of the same concerns. Students should consider setting up a plan that allows them to study a bit each day instead of cramming. Breaking down classes into chapters, units or groups of topics and having more short review sessions can make studying more manageable. Be sure to schedule breaks to prevent getting too bogged down.
Don’t Neglect Sleep
When students are behind on studying, pulling an all-nighter can seem like a good idea. The right amount of sleep (six to nine hours for most people) helps information sink in and prevents fatigue.
Be Aware of Overall Health and Wellness
Finals are stressful and illnesses are common this time of year. Students who are feeling physically ill should visit the Student Health Clinic. Students who are feeling isolated or emotionally distressed can visit the Counseling and Testing Center. Taking care of physical and emotional health allows students to fully enjoy the winter break and travels.