Get serious about finals

student working at a computer

Final exams are starting soon and we know that can come with some stress. Here are a few tips about how you can take advantage of your study time as you finish the semester.

  1. Write out a study plan: Start by writing down what you have to complete for each course. Write your plans in your calendar or planner. Plotting out a schedule for studying will help you manage your time effectively.
  2. Be active in your studying: It’s helpful to practice what you will experience in the exam environment. If you have to problem-solve, then solve some problems. Create summaries of your notes to help with essay exams. The act of synthesizing the information into a written format will help you learn the material.
  3. Find a study partner: Studying for finals can be lonely but finding a “study buddy” to help you prepare for exams makes it easier to stay motivated. Connect over Zoom, Hangouts or FaceTime to share ideas and review.
  4. Speak to your instructors: This advice is especially important if you are not sure what your finals will cover or what is expected on a project or paper. Finding out this information will allow you to focus on what’s really important in the material.
  5. Talk it out: Staff members are available during finals week to help you make use of academic resources. They will listen to your concerns and help you design your best approach to handling your test preparation.

If you have a remote exam coming up, you may find the below reminders helpful:

  • Know the test format: Clarify the format of your final exam well before the test date.
  • Check your computer: Avoid last-minute issues by confirming your computer has the software you need. Also, keep your laptop charger nearby and on-hand if needed.
  • Select a quiet test-taking spot: When it’s time to take the exam, select a quiet spot away from distractions.
  • Set aside dedicated time for the exam: You may have to take your exam at a specific time; however, if the test will be available for several hours (or even a few days), choose a time that presents the least potential for distraction or interruption.
  • Technical problems during the exam: Don’t panic and get in touch with your instructor immediately.