Don’t worry, just study

Five tips to help with this exam period

By Madeleine Belgum

It’s that time of year again, the snow is starting to melt, to birds are starting to sing and students are starting to freak out about exams. It seems these last few weeks of the semester are passing far too quickly, with many of us focused on finding summer work or planning epic road trips for the warmer days ahead. However, as much as we can dream of summer, we cannot escape the reality that is the swirling vortex of exams and assignments.

Here at The Argus, we feel your pain and understand how stressful this time of year can be. So we consulted our fellow students and several student directed internet blogs and have found five great tips to help you feel more prepared for the many assignments and exams you have to face.

1)      Don’t leave it until the last minute

We’ve all done it and regretted it. You say to yourself “it’s not due for two weeks, I don’t need to start it yet” and before you know it it’s the night before and you haven’t even started. So, try to start on your assignments and study notes as soon as possible to avoid becoming overwhelmed.

2) Prioritize

All too often in university you won’t just have one single project to focus on, you may even have one in every class. Some students also have a job, and this too just adds to stress levels. To help this seem a little more manageable it may be a good idea to start a list. Write everything that you need to do down in order of due date and work your way down the list. Not only does this help you keep focused on what to do next, it also gives you a little satisfaction each time you scratch off a finished project.

3) Minimize distractions

According to a 2008 article in The New York Times by Maggie Jackson, it takes an average of twenty one minutes to regain focus after a distraction. That’s a lot of valuable study time to waste! So close Facebook, or reddit, or whatever the case may be, and put your cell phone on silent, this way you will be more focused and productive.

4) Ask questions and use the resources available to you

We have the privilege of attending a university with small class sizes. This means that professors are more available if needed. So if there is something on a test or assignment that you just don’t understand, don’t be afraid to reach out and ask your prof to meet and discuss the question. There is also an excellent library with knowledgeable staff and groups such as the Peer Assisted Learning Center who are there to help too.

5) Relax!

Just take a deep breath and do what you need to do. Stressing out with only make it more difficult to focus and more difficult to get things done. Have faith in yourself and good luck!