Beat exam stress: tips for studying


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With final exams quickly approaching, it can be easy to get overwhelmed by all the material that is yet to be mastered. Don’t panic yet–these study tips can help even the most frazzled of college students have an effective yet painless study schedule.

Prioritize your schedule

First thing’s first: grab a planner and write out everything–your work schedule, exam dates and any final project due dates. From there, figure out which exams necessitate more study time and plan accordingly. Create a study schedule that dedicates more time to the more stressful exams and projects, while still allowing time for breaks, meals and naps.

Revisit old notes and lecture slides

Combine all class notes into a master study guide. This is a good time to review the textbook and lecture slides to add in any important material that may have been missed. Creating your own study guide is also beneficial for retention and comprehension. This is also a good time to highlight important concepts and review any old material that may have been confusing.

Organize a group study session

Note: these are only effective when groups actually study instead of goof off. Attending group study sessions can be beneficial for accountability purposes, while also helping to better understand the material. One person in the group might have a grasp on any material that others are stuck on, thus benefitting the entire group. Group study sessions can also make studying a more positive experience, as friends can provide support and encouragement.

Meet with your professor

Meeting with your professor can be beneficial to clarify any material that may still be confusing. It can also serve as a time to get any last-minute tips about what to pay attention to while studying. Your professor can also give advice about what they are looking for in an essay and short-answer questions, which will put you at an advantage when you take the final.

Talk it out

Learning concepts by teaching others can be a great way to study. This can be done by using whiteboards in study rooms to map out concepts and explain the material as if you were teaching a class on the subject. This can also be done in group study sessions. Teaching concepts to others reinforces comprehension of the material while also giving your eyes a break from staring at textbooks and computer screens.