My Study Routine For Exams

Being at home and nearly 100 miles away from campus is tough, especially when it comes to preparing for class. You don’t have access to various study spots in the library nor in-person TA sessions to attend. The feeling of living the same daily routine from the comfort of your own room makes it hard to focus and do well in your courses.

I can relate to this feeling as I was no longer on campus this semester. I didn’t just miss my awesome roommates, but I also missed the opportunity to sit at the Cabell library for hours trying to catch up on work or attend group study sessions with my friends. Online school made it as if I was on my own for the entire semester. This is where I decided it was time to adapt and look for a new study routine. 

  1. 1. Hand-writing notes

    When it came to in-person classes, I was always one to type my notes because it was a faster way of writing down all the information mentioned in the lecture. Now that classes were online, I had the opportunity of pausing pre-recorded lectures, which gave me the time to handwrite my notes. At first, I was skeptical because I didn’t know how that would affect my memory and how well I would grasp new material. I was so wrong! It helped me a lot and even to the point where I didn’t feel as if I had to revisit the lecture frequently.  

  2. 2. Teaching a friend

    This is probably the most effective trick I have had all semester, and this even works with in-person classes. With COVID-19, it may be hard to meet with a friend to do this with, so a family member, your pet or even a stuffed animal will work perfectly fine. All you have to do is teach the material you have learned to another person because that tests your own knowledge. If you know the information well enough, then you should have no problem explaining it to someone else.  

  3. 3. Summarize each chapter

    The week before the exam, I always make a packet of notes with a page summary of each chapter. I include key points, acronyms and any important formulas that I may need to memorize. This way, I don’t feel so overwhelmed with pages and pages of notes to go over when I am reviewing. It can also be a fun activity if you enjoy highlighting and color-coding your notes. 

So, these are the three main tips I have created for myself to do well in my online classes. It does differ from how I studied at school with TA sessions, tons of group work and collaboration. However, I believe that adapting to different situations and trying to make the most of them is very important and will help you succeed in any environment. I understand that with online lectures, it can be difficult to create an effective study environment, but I really hope these tips will provide motivation and help everyone with their future exams. 

Happy studying!