As a Senior, I’ve had my fair share of finals that I’ve managed to survive. With my finals season coming up, I’ve decided to share some tips on what not to do during finals. Most of these tips come from personal experience, and others are from advice handed down to me by past seniors. Without further adieu, here’s Sam’s Declassified Finals Survival Guide.
Do not save everything for the last minute.
My language professor didn’t care when we turned in work as long as we gave it in before the midterm (for the first half of the lessons) and final (for the second half). That offer sounded amazing. I put off all of my work for that class and used that time to work on papers and tests assigned for other classes throughout the year. I thought that this would be the perfect way to study for the last, big test, however when the final came, I spent the whole day and night finishing the work. It took what felt like forever to complete, and didn’t help me to actually learn the material. I walked into the exam room not feeling extremely unprepared.
Do not stay indoors the whole time.
It’s typical to spend all your time in the library or your dorm room to study, but you’re going to need a break. Finals burnout is a real thing. When you spend every minute studying, you put so much pressure on these tests that anxiety can build up. Take a break by going outdoors. Go for a walk. Sit under a tree and read something non-school related. Or, if you insist that you must spend every minute studying, study outside on an open, green area on campus.
Do not forget to make a study plan.
Sometimes we forget about that one reading that ends up being a part of the question that counts the most. Plan out what you are going to get done each day so that ultimately, you cover everything. I like to allocate about three days per test. The first day, I review any visual or audio listenings that were covered during the course, the second day is for going over all of the readings in the order we covered them, and the third is for reading and rereading class notes. This method allows me to spend enough time going over topics I do not understand instead of last minute cramming.
Do not party every night.
The parties will be there when you get back. With more free time, the opportunity to go out seems tempting, but instead it is more beneficial to use that time to study for your next test or finish that final paper you keep procrastinating on completing.
Do not show up to every final in sweatpants.
Wearing comfortable clothes is something I loved to do when taking tests. I liked to show up in sweatpants and a t-shirt, but what I have found is that taking the test in more everyday clothes p puts me in a different mind set. Instead of being really relaxed, I become more motivated to finish the test so I can move on to what else I have to do that day.