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10 Tips for Preparing for Finals

With final exam season just beginning to bloom, the backlashes come into effect weeks before you have to sit down for that cumulative exam that seems impossible to finish. The preparation can be draining and leave you feeling like it is the end of the world, but with these tips, you won’t be feeling as drained and will be ready to tackle those exams!

  1. Always have a snack and water on you.

  2. Don’t cram! Start studying for an exam a week in advance so you don’t have to binge study for 12 hours at a time.

  3. Create a daily outline to organize what you want to accomplish for the day.

  4. It is okay to take a break! Find time throughout your day to do something that will give your mind a break. Exercise, cleaning, and cooking are great break-time activities.

  5. If possible, work with a group of friends. Misery loves company, so why not prepare for the most stressful time of year with people that make you happy?

  6. Try using multi-colored pens to organize your notes. The different colors may help with remembering the information.

  7. Don’t become too dependent on caffeine! It is only going to lead to a crash when you need your energy the most.

  8. My own personal 2am rule of thumb: never stay up studying or doing homework past 2am. Nothing productive or efficient happens after that time. Pulling an all nighter can do more harm than good. Sleep is important for retaining information, so don’t forget that solidifying aspect of studying.

  9. Don’t be afraid to go to your professors for extra help or for guidance in preparing for their exam. They are there for you to utilize!

  10. GRADES DO NOT DEFINE YOU! No matter how important the exam is, or the class is to your major or to your application to grad school, it is just a grade. There are so many more other important components that make you, you.

No matter how stressful this time of year may seem, just know that it is not impossible. Utilizing the resources around you and taking advantage of the library and other quiet spots on campus is key. Time management is crucial during this time of the semester, so be sure to stay on top of your work so you aren't struggling to get everything done all at once. While all of your focus may be on studying and getting those last minute projects finished, don’t forget the essentials. Eating, staying hydrated, sleeping and exercise are vital for being able to stay focused and ready to take on finals. So, while you take care of your studying, don’t forget to take care of yourself. While there are multiple exams to take, there is only one you.


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