As exam season quickly approaches, today, I’m hoping to offer some of the best and unique studying tricks that I accumulated through college! Whether you’ve returned to in-person classes or are still tackling mid-terms from your home, these tips are guaranteed to take you on a path toward success. So, take a breath, sit back, and read below to best prepare for the weeks ahead.
Let’s Mid-term Prep!
Time Management and Early Preparation
Yes, despite the ease of procrastination that often leads us to wait until the last minute to complete assignments, projects, and study materials, the key to success is managing time and beginning the study process early enough. Doing so not only helps you to stay organized, as we also encourage you to block off a relatively short, but significant, amount of time each day leading up to the exam, but will help you divide out the bulk of studying so as to not have to account for loads of materials in a short time period. Additionally, it has been scientifically proven that our brains retain information much more efficiently if spaced out over time, instead of in the 48 hours leading up to the exam. So, how do you get started? We recommend compiling your notes from the semester into a document where you can read, interact, and even create flashcards or other resources based on the most important topics.
Write, Listen, Learn
We strongly encourage you to incorporate a variety of study strategies into your overall plan of attack. Simply going on Quizlet, studying the same set of flashcards, or chatting through topics with a roommate is not enough to supply your brain with a full and thorough understanding of courses material for the exam. The key to incorporating altering strategies is to space them out over time – we encourage you to take a “daily approach” and choose a strategy per day leading up to the exam. However, if time does not pertain you to do so, try an hour or two per tactic and see the reflection in your score!
Listening to Your Brain
This may sound unique, but yes, I am encouraging you to STOP studying when your brain alerts you! We’ve all been there, it’s midnight, we’re basically asleep but still pushing through to get in that last hour of studying for the exam. While you may think I sound crazy, I am a firm believer in the importance of sleeping, taking a walk, grabbing a cup of coffee, or otherwise removing yourself from the material to avoid going crazy. Even more, it’s highly unlikely that in your state of exhaustion you will be capable of retaining important information. So, by blocking off little time periods for a week or two leading up to the exam (doesn’t have to be more than 30 mins/day!), and avoiding the late hours of the night, you’ll be able to ace your exam without giving up your mental health and stability.
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