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Now that second semester is in full swing, it is only a matter of time before quizzes and exams begin to overwhelm us all. While I dislike studying, the one thing I like about it is listening to music in order to motivate me through it. Over the past year and a half of my college experience, I have created a study playlist that includes songs that I don’t feel the need to sing along to. This way, I can study and not be completely bored. These songs have helped me write long papers, helped me finish projects and have helped me cram for exams. I thought I’d share a couple of my favorite ones. These songs don’t work for everyone, so try them at your own risk. However, if they end up working for you as much as they do for me, you’ll enjoy studying more. 

“Higher Love” by Kygo and Whitney Houston

I found this song when I was walking to the communal bathroom my freshman year while someone was blasting it from inside their room. After “Shazaming it,” I instantly added it to my regular playlist. It wasn’t until I began studying for my Psych 100 final last year that this really became one of my study songs because of the motivation it brought me.

With Whitney Houston’s beautiful voice and Kygo’s great remix, this song is always fun to listen to. I especially like to listen to this one while I am studying for a subject such as Psychology or anything in the social sciences area. 

“Stars” by Future Generations

One of my friends from home showed me this song the summer before I left for college. It wasn’t until I heard it again in a random store in downtown State College that I remembered it. Something about this song just makes me buckle down and focus to the point where I can’t remember the words of the song, but I can remember exactly what section of the subject I was studying when I heard it.

I only listen to this song while I’m studying because I don’t want to ruin whatever energy this song provides me. I would highly recommend listening to this song while cramming for an exam involving a lot of memorization.

“Hold The Line” by Avicii and A R I Z O N A

If you asked me to name where I found it, I really couldn’t tell you. I’m pretty sure I heard this song in a commercial or some sort of video. In order to get through my spanish vocabulary words during Spanish 3, I listened to this song on repeat for every exam. It really worked. I had those vocabulary words down.

That being said, I’ve also used this song to write essays and to study for other parts of exams. Every time I hear it, I can still think of the spanish word for “fork.” I would definitely recommend listening to this song while studying for a foreign language class.

“What I Like About You” by Jonas Blue and Theresa Rex

This song came from a friend of mine’s playlist, and I found it after it randomly came on while I was writing an essay last year and for some reason I was able to write for the entirety of the song without stopping. I’m not completely sure why I can write essays to this song so easily but I have listened to this song on repeat while finishing an essay and while it did get annoying, it helped me finish the essay.

The beat of the song really inspires me to write. It’s almost like the Mario Kart music that people on TikTok use in order to write an essay. 

“Plot Twist” by Marc E. Bassy and Kyle

I’m not sure where I got this song from, but all I know is that for some reason I decided it would be a good song to listen to while working on a project for my English 15 class. Since then, it holds a steady spot on my study playlist.

This song is really great for doing homework or projects that aren’t that difficult but require focus in order to complete. While I wouldn’t recommend listening to this song on repeat for too long, if you are nearing the end of finishing a project and you need some motivation, this song is great. 

With these songs and others from my playlist that I’ll link here, I am able to study, do projects and write papers with focus. I know we are all dreading the weeks ahead in the semester where there is so much work to be done, but hopefully these songs make it a little bit easier. Happy listening! 

Reese Bernstein is a junior at Penn State majoring in Psychology with a focus in business. She is from "right outside" of DC in Northern Virginia. Along with writing for Her Campus, Reese is a member of a sorority and occasionally goes to the gym when feeling motivated.
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