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Update: How to Deal with a Morning Class

Welcome (back) to Wake, people. Here we are, at the beginning of a new semester, getting ready to tackle the upcoming classes, exams, papers and all the messes. However, on the brighter side, this also marks the unofficial (or official) start to my second year with Her Campus. The past year has been amazing with a lot of fun articles and events, and I can’t wait for another one or two such years.

The other day I was going through my profile and I saw my first ever article for Her Campus, “How to Deal with a Morning Class”. When I wrote that article, I thought I was finally able to wave good bye to all morning classes as I move up the ladder, but last semester I had an even worse schedule than just an 8 a.m; an 8 a.m. followed by a 9:30, both major related classes. So I came up with this idea of writing an updated version of guidance on taking a morning class after another semester of battling with them.

If you are an early bird who has no problem getting up early on a daily basis, great. But for the rest of us, a morning class equals drowsiness, hunger, headache and anything except concentrating in class. Here are some of the tips on dealing with a morning class that I have collected along the way for everyone who is not a morning person.

Get up early/earlier.

Yes, you read it correctly. I’m saying getting up EARLY, and perhaps earlier than necessary. Before last semester, I used to be that kind of person who woke up 15 minutes before class and then went straight to class. That helped my attendance but not really my performance. I was constantly dozing off and drifting away, and it took me longer afterwards to read over my notes and pick up what the professor was talking about in class. However, during last semester, I knew that all my morning classes were pretty difficult, and I couldn’t afford to screw them up. I tried to wake up one hour to 45 minutes before class so that I had enough time to wash my face, pick an outfit, get myself some coffee and be wide awake by the time I sat in classroom.

Do something to truly wake up.

Everyone has something that is able to make all the morning grumpiness go away. It can be washing your face, making your bed, taking a shower stretching, doing a quick meditation, eating breakfast, taking a walk outside (to Starbucks perhaps) or anything that is helpful to you. Last semester after waking up, I would usually do my skincare routine, put on a quick makeup and then walk to get my dose of cold brew. As an enthusiastic coffee drinker, nothing can make getting up easier than coffee. The key here is really to treat the process of going to morning classes as starting a brand new day, just a little earlier than usual, instead a totally undesirable situation that you’re trying to get over with.

Have breakfast or take a snack to class.

Always, always eat before (or during) class! If you don’t want to trade sleep for a full breakfast before class, then grab a snack to class because starving is bad for both your body and grade. I usually go for a banana, a yogurt, a granola bar or some peanut butter crackers. Fitting in breakfast before class is going to help you stay alert and prevent your stomach from rumbling.

Prepare before and study after class.

Not feeling 100% in the morning? It happens all the time. Preparing for class beforehand is always a good idea, especially when it comes to morning classes. Read the textbook ahead of class to get a sense of what will be covered and take good notes so that you can study afterwards. Pack your books, homework, and snacks the night before if you tend to forget things in the morning (and waking up your roommate isn’t fun). If you have a hard time following your professor, ask if you are allowed to record the lecture so that you can go back and re-listen to the parts you’ve failed to catch during class.


My standard 8 a.m. combo is my coffee and I. I know this is probably not the healthiest option for early in the morning, but it works for me and I just love coffee so much. I will probably lose half of my motivation for morning classes if I’m not allowed to sip coffee. If you are a coffee junkie too, treat yourself with some special orders. If you are cautious about blood pressure and other side effects, try Matcha or simply drink a lot of water to stay awake.

*Gifs courtesy of Gihy.com. 

Joanne is a senior at Wake Forest University majoring in international relations and econ. She loves traveling and experiencing different cultures, especially food. She is a HUGE sports enthusiast. She writes about all the little things she loves in her daily life. She wastes most of her time watching TV shows and movies. 
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