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Five Ways to Get a Head Start on Finals Season

Finals are usually the most stressful time of the year for college students. With finals coming, it’s beneficial to get a head start and save yourself some stress. Here are some steps to follow if you want to make the most of this finals season. 

Start studying now.

The first and most important tip on this list is to start studying as soon as possible. One major contributor to finals stress is under-preparation. Finals become much more bearable when you understand the material and don’t have to worry about whether or not you gave the correct answers. The more time you give yourself to prepare, the better. The best way to do this is to plan for each final and schedule times throughout your weeks to study for each, devoting more attention to specific subjects as needed. 

Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

Although it’s hard to admit, many of us are still pretty confused by important class topics by the time finals roll around. The thing is, we don’t have to be. Professors and TAs are there to help, so be sure to reach out to them if you find any blind spots while you’re studying. Asking for help and clarification shouldn’t be embarrassing, no matter how late in the semester it is. In fact, advocating for yourself is just a way to give yourself the best chance, and there is nothing wrong with that.

Put all events and commitments in your calendar.

If you’re like me, finals give you tunnel vision. Sometimes so severely that you forget about other responsibilities, whether they’re academic or personal. To combat this, I try to put every single event in one calendar on my phone. This includes club meetings, family outings, and pretty much anything that can potentially become lost in the chaos. This way, you can remember all of the other events and commitments that persist during finals.

Factor in other assignments when planning for finals.

Similar to the last tip, be sure to make time to complete other assignments such as essays, last-minute quizzes, and extra credit opportunities. Of course, doing these assignments before finals start is ideal, but it’s not always possible. So, try to carve out time specifically dedicated to these assignments as well as finals prep. Just because finals are coming doesn’t mean your other projects have to suffer.

Take breaks when you need them.

No matter how important finals are, breaks are a crucial part of doing well on them. Don’t burn yourself out before you get to the hardest part! Whether this means taking it easy now and hitting the ground running later or incorporating downtime into your finals schedule, give yourself a chance to breathe.

Hopefully, these tips will help prepare you for finals and make them a little more manageable.

Samantha is a sophomore at CU pursuing a double major in philosophy and sociology. In the future, she hopes to go to law school and become a human rights attorney. She enjoys creative writing, crocheting sweaters, listening to music, and watching Marvel movies in her spare time.
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