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

With finals just around the corner, it’s that time of the year where you find yourself spending countless hours at the library. As stressful as finals may be, we have incorporated ways to help you gain the most out of your study sessions.  

1. Schedule your finals

The first thing you will want to do is to mark down when your finals are—either in your planner or cell phone—and set alarms for those days to ensure you will not miss them. If they’re early in the morning, make sure you give yourself enough time to get ready and to fully wake up.

2. Organize your notes

Prior to even studying, gather all of your study materials—trust us, studying will go much smoother and will makes less things to worry about. After lectures, identify key terms and main concepts by highlighting them in different colors or making simplified diagrams.

3. Plan how to study

Before cracking open a book, outline a realistic schedule of what materials you plan to study each day to prepare you for your upcoming exam. If you know you will have many obligations one day—like a soccer game—you may not want to cram a lot to study that day. Also, be sure to pack a healthy snack for when you hit the books and maintain a healthy sleep pattern.

4. Find a place you can focus

Whether it be the library, outside or a café—as long as it is a place with minimal distractions—find a place to station yourself where you feel comfy and focused. Preferably not in your dorm room because your mind associates your dorm room as a place for sleep.

5. Put your phone down

If you find yourself constantly distracted by your phone, switch it to “Do Not Disturb” during your study intervals then treat yourself during your study breaks by checking all your missed notifications. If that doesn’t work, turn it off and put it somewhere out of sight.

6. Listen to music

To further help you get in the zone, put on your headphones and listen to music that is soothing—typically instrumentals, acoustics or covers. The playlist, Mellow Beats, on Spotify plays all of the Top Hits as relaxing instrumentals, but there are also many other playlists to help you focus.

7. Refer to class notes

If your professor posts PowerPoints or lectures online, be sure to review them and compare them to your textbook and class notes. Also, review previous quizzes and tests and identify where you have had the most difficulty.

8. Create an outline

Sometimes rewriting the material or repeatedly going over it can help the material covered in class make more sense or easier to remember. Create a Quizlet study set to test your knowledge through flashcards or create an outline summarizing the notes in your own words for better understanding.

9. Reach out

If you come across something that does not make sense, do not hesitate to ask for help—either from your professor, a tutor or a student in your class. By not waiting until the last minute before an exam to study, you are granting yourself the opportunity for more clarifications to more complex concepts.

10. Take study breaks

Remember, you’re only human! Your attention span only lasts so long. If you find yourself reading the same sentence over and over again, take a 10-30-minute study break: go for a walk, socialize with your friends, have a snack, go on your phone or take a power nap, then hit the books again for another two-hour block interval.


Think positively and remember to breathe! If you are reading this article, that just proves how dedicated you are to killin’ your exam. Focus on what you do know rather than getting hung up on what you don’t or regretting on not having studied more. You got this!

Her Campus Placeholder Avatar
Dania El-Ghazal

Scranton '18

My whole biography realistically can't fit here so