Mid-November is the time of the semester when students hunker down to write papers and begin studying for exams. This can be a stressful time for may students, but it doesn’t have to be. We’ve got some study tips to help you make it through papers and exams, and even have some fun along the way.
1) Plan Ahead
We all know that paper season is coming, and yet so often we are still taken off guard when it arrives. We get through midterms and forget that papers are coming hard and fast. Before November, or even at the beginning of the semester, take a look at your course syllabus and take note of when your papers are due. It helps to write the due dates on a calendar, in an agenda, or even just to make a list. This way you can see when everything is due and plan for the weeks where things might get overwhelming. Planning ahead will help you to get work done early when you need to and will keep you from being caught off guard.
2) Ask Questions and Ask Them Early
If you don’t quite understand something about a paper or the syllabus isn’t clear, ask your professors for clarification. Your professors want you to succeed and are more than happy to answer your questions about assignments. They often appreciate it. Asking questions about your papers and assignments will help you to do well and will prevent you from getting stuck at the last minute. The trick is to ask these questions well in advance. If you leave it until the day or so before you may be stuck without enough time to finish.
3) Take Breaks
It’s important to spend enough time on each assignment, but trying to do everything in one go will often leave you exhausted and frustrated. Take time each day to do something that helps you relax or clear your head. There are studies that say you should take a 10 minute break every half an hour or so. Exercising during your break will help you to focus and stay energized.
4) Try a Change of Scenery
Sometimes sitting in your dorm room or in the library for days on end can be a little tiring. A great way to keep your brain alert is to try working somewhere you don’t normally do schoolwork. You could hop on a bus to Starbucks for the day, or even try sitting in a different place on campus. A change of scene can help motivate you and even provide you with a new stroke of creativity or ideas.
Sometimes you just need to throw on a pair of pajamas or some sweat pants, make a hot beverage, and maybe even some popcorn. Being comfy can sometimes be all you need to get through those last few pages of a paper.
6) Get Enough Sleep
It is too easy sometimes to stay up until crazy hours of the night for weeks at a time. Most times, this is not a good idea. Go to bed early sometimes or sleep in a little later to make sure that you aren’t getting burnt out. This actually makes you more productive and focused.
7) Edit Edit Edit
It is always a good idea to leave yourself some time to edit your work. This is so important to improve the quality of your papers. Editing your work the next day can bring your mark up by a full grade sometimes. You can even ask a friend to edit your paper, or you could schedule an appointment with the Centre for Academic Excellence to get some tips on how to improve your writing.
There are so many different ways that people study. Some people need to start studying weeks ahead of time in order to take any information in. Others are super last minute people who need a tight deadline to study. Some need to rewrite their notes and others need to talk about the information. It is important to know how you study best so that you can maximize your time. If you know how you study best, you will know best how to succeed in your exams.
BA Business Administration – International Development
Senior Student Admissions Representative