The end of the semester is almost upon us and that means final exams. It is important to prepare for final exams to help decrease anxiety. Here are a few ideas that will help out with study habits and making it successfully through finals.
- Start early. The idea of waiting until the last minute to write a paper or get ready for a test is something college students may experience. Many students also probably found a way to do well even when they procrastinated. Final exams are different; waiting until the night before exams to cram an entire semester of materials into a few hours is not a good strategy. Avoid the headache, stress, and lack of sleep. Start early and finish strong.
- Make a plan. A benefit of starting early is making a plan. Map out when a study plan, what to study for, and where budgeting time to study for it. A good idea is to set aside time to be effective with your study strategies.
- Study in a comfortable environment. Study in an environment that provides a space for concentration. For some it might be the library, a coffee shop, or a comfortable chair at home. Do what works best, and readjust if necessary.
- Talk to the professor. Go to office hours. Stay after class and ask questions. Get clarification or information that is necessary for learning. Professors are here to help and support student success. Use their knowledge and advice to guide study strategies.
- Take breaks. Many students have binged watched three hours of a television show on a computer and thought, “where did the time go?” Use breaks strategically. Take a walk. Have dinner with a friend. See a movie. Read a book or listen to a podcast. Make sure to manage your break time to gain energy and to benefit learning.
- Utilize self-care. We have all seen the stereotypical depiction of exam time in movies or television shows. Avoid stress from lack of planning and don’t use caffeine or other bad habits for self-care. Plan to budget time for self-care. The best students process the class material and avoid sleep the least during exams. Plan time to get the proper rest. Eat whole meals on a schedule. Take time for exercise. Do the things that support feeling healthy and refreshed.
Hopefully these tips are helpful during the process of preparing for final exams! Good luck on your final exams and remember to celebrate all accomplishments.