Finals may be one of the most bittersweet things in the world- the best time of the year (aka summer) is so close you can taste it, but those last few exams are lingering over your head and are not going away until you’re near a mental breakdown. Here are the 5 inevitable stages of studying you will most likely go through during this season of finals. At least it’s not still snowing!
1. Motivation: You’ve got your color-coded study guide, your new felt-tip pens, and some nutritious and energetic study snacks ready to go! Your cubby in Dinand is filled to the brim with papers and notebooks and looks a bit overwhelming, but you can see that A in sight. Oh- and your cubby mate is not exactly hard on the eyes! It even feels good to know how much you’ve accomplished this semester- you’ve made it so far and you know you can tackle any information coming your way. With confidence and hope, you open your textbook and begin. This might not be so bad after all!
2. HesitationL Wait- this test is cumulative? On 14 chapters? And you have 47 pages of notes? Ok, one page at a time… hm. This is a little harder than you thought. You’ll just borrow your friend’s car and take a quick break to pick up some InHouse coffee. Then you know you’ll be able to focus and have the energy to memorize some Emily Dickinson or those notes from that class you missed last Thursday morning (hasn’t your teacher ever heard of Leitrim’s?). But wait… you wonder who is studying in the swallows of Dinand… you’ll just go take a quick peek and come right back.
3. Denial: It’s 3 am and you have about twelve hundred terms to know for your exam tomorrow. You can’t do it right now. It’s just not going to happen. Honestly, you can’t even control this anymore. Your teacher would want you to get some sleep and just do the best you can. Right? You can just review tomorrow morning and be totally fine- the exam isn’t till 11:30 am, and you’ll definitely get an early start. Is the exam really tomorrow? Maybe it’s on Monday…
4. Regret: You slept till 10:45 am and, in a fury of finding a presentable outfit other than pajamas and shoving three bites of a granola bar down your throat, have about 15 minutes to review before the exam. As you cram last-minute and then begin the test, you experience waves of regretful emotions. Why did you spend an hour and a half people-watching at Kimball last night? How do you not know what the first question even means? This is not going to end well.
5. Forget: You finished (more like barely-finished and struggled-through) your final exam. It’s summer! Yay! In a state of blissful distraction, you completely forget that you only answered half of the fill-in-the-blank questions and made up a few concepts (at least they were creative!) on the short answer on that test. You also neglect to remember that, in the midst of the balmy, relaxing early days of summer, you will eventually receive a grade that might actually matter a little bit. It isn’t until you hear your name being yelled by a pair of angry parents that you remember that fateful day- a strong effort is what matters in the end though, right?