So it’s time for everyone to start a slow count-down to Christmas, but since I am in university Christmas isn’t even in my mind yet. First comes the “finals season”! Before I can even think of holidays, and presents and seeing my family I first have to finish all my finals. The amount of stress can be consuming and very exhausting but over the many years of university I have learned how to effectively study and keep from getting stressed out (too much). I believe there is a healthy amount of stress that can keep you motivated. Although during studying you may learn like the picture below, don’t fret, the information is in fact going into your brain.
Although I don’t completely agree with the education system, especially that of university, it is still important to try and do well on exams for your future. Just a short aside: I believe that university has become more of a business than a useful institution just so one can learn and become more knowledgable. Tuition rates have become ridiculous, and I’m not just saying that because I’m already in debt! But the whole system of exams is somehow not effective. I believe that exams aren’t effective in understanding and seeing how much a person has learned. Exams have become a memorization and regurgitation sort of thing instead of an applying and learning. However, even with all this negative views of our eduction system, it is still important to study and do well since it is how we stand out from each other for jobs and opportunities and how we can do what we always dreamed of doing.
Okay, after all that, there are many things to keep in mind when studying that has helped me over the years.
1. I have learned the hard way of not bringing my laptop to class. Yes, it is helpful for some people but if you find that you aren’t actually retaining anything then writing your own notes or printing off the professor’s slides and writing notes on that will help the information stay in your noggin (a.k.a head)
2. Cue cards! Cue card will become your best friend! They are a great way of actively learning and retaining information by testing yourself.
3. Not only cue cards, but learn how to actively use your brain. If this means writing and re-writing your notes, over and over. Do it! I found that just highlighting your readings isn’t enough unless your separate that important, high-lighted information and then memorize it. Actively using your brain is the most important thing because the information will stay in your brain longer.
4. Reward yourself. Many people are able to be motivated for a long time but I find my mind slips elsewhere. To me sipping a hot chocolate by the fire at home for the holidays. So I try and reward myself with watching part of a movie or a Youtube video every hour or so and then start again.
5. Plan ahead your study calendar. I feel like this keeps me on track because I feel guilty if I miss a day. But it also means that I allot enough time for me to study each exam. I have no excuses for not having time to study.
6. Lastly, SLEEP! Pulling “all nighters” can be more hurtful than useful. Sleep is a natural stress-reducer and obviously you need your brain to be rested so that you can study effectively.
So keep these tips in mind when you’re studying for your exams. And just do your best for each exam, try not to look at the bigger picture (like: “If I don’t do well on this exam then my whole university experience will be for nothing and I won’t get a good job.”) Just focus on each exam separately.
Good luck!! And please comment and let me know you’re study tips that I could try out. Always looking for more options.