Friday, May 2, 2014

4 Study Tips for Finals Success

1. Alternate Study Spots—Location matters!  Pick places that are quiet and allow focus (like the 2nd and 3rd floor of the library).  Once you find your spots move around. Research has found that students who study in more than one location do better than those that stick to one spot. Please be considerate of noise levels during finals time and remember to close group study room doors.

2. Minimize Technology Distractions—Who hasn’t found themselves caught in the black holes of Buzzfeed, Facebook, Email, Wikipedia…
Try turning your phone on airplane mode, or off altogether, to minimize the urge to check in.  If you need to use a laptop for studying don’t keep a Facebook tab open for distraction.  Instead, try setting small study goals and rewarding yourself with a 5-minute Facebook break.  The goal is to focus instead of multitasking and dividing attention.

3. Write it Down—If you’ve ever had an instructor who’s allowed you to bring in a problem sheet or note sheet you may have noticed that just the act of writing it out helps to remember. Studies have found that note taking is more effective on memory then mental rehearsal. Note taking allows you to process and synthesize the main points of the lecture in your own words and you are more likely to listen closely when you are not just planning to fall back on handouts of the slides.  If you haven’t taken your own notes all semester, rewrite the main points of the chapters or power points.  If you have a study guide fill it out by hand. 

4. Take Care of Yourself—Be aware that your consumption of content is not the only thing effecting your exam performance.  It’s tempting to stay up into the wee hours studying and surviving on take-out and coffee but that could leave you a stressed, tired mess on exam day.  Plan to eat healthy, drink water, and get in exercise and sleep.

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