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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Purdue chapter.

We have nearly made it through the first round of midterms. Some of us probably are happy to get them out of the way. However, others are probably dreading the rest of the semester after seeing these first rounds of scores. If you fall in the latter group, I have some advice to hopefully assist you on the next set of midterms you’ll have to face

  1. Know When and Where your Exams Take Place

Probably the most important part of doing well on an exam is actually taking the exam. If you consistently go to class then you probably will be reminded many times by your professors when the next exam will take place. However, if you have found yourself skipping more than attending it’s probably time to open Brightspace and check when the next exam is. Personally, this semester I have a ton of exams that all seem to stack upon one another. At the beginning of the semester, I added them all to my phone calendar and then turned off the holidays. This way I can quickly check my calendar and know exactly how many exams I have each week and what days they fall on.

  • Use Old Exams to Study

I know this seems obvious, but I really think people sometimes doubt the power of past exams. In my experience, reading over notes, watching old lectures, and scrolling through slides is not very useful except to grasp a general understanding. Using old exams forces you to practice applying the skills you are learning in a format that likely mimics the real exam. If you take an old exam and do not do well, don’t fall into the trap of saying, “Oh but I know this now” and never going back to it. Make sure you redo the exam a bit later to make sure you have actually retained the information and then rinse and repeat until you really know the material.

  • Find your Perfect Study Spot

First, decide if you need dead silence or can study successfully in a group setting. If you have never tried studying in groups, I highly recommend it as a way to understand material faster. You will both be learning the material and can bounce ideas and questions off one another which helps you really understand the material since you will be listening and teaching it. Once you know which study setting suits you best, adventure around campus looking for your perfect spot to study. Some places I recommend are classrooms after typical hours, college specific student lounges, local coffee shops, and of course your own room or apartment.

If you aced all of your midterms so far, congrats! If not, hopefully you have a few new things to try to improve for the next round. Good Luck!

I grew up in eastern PA and am now at Purdue pursuing a B.S. in Industrial Engineer.