We all get to that time of the term where it is seems like there is just one exam after another. Quizzes, tests, mid-terms, and finals fill your calendar and your days. So how do you succeed, when there’s just so much piling up? Here are some strategies that might help.
Just go to class
We know getting up for an early lecture or really any lecture before 10:30 am is pretty hard for most of us. You drag yourself out of bed for maybe the first month of lectures, but after that you just tell yourself “I will just read the lecture slides the professor posts online”. The problem with just reading lecture slides is the majority of professors don’t just present the lecture slides. Most professors usually explain things in the slides better or add more information than the slides have; meaning that just by not coming to the lecture you are completely losing out on some of the course material that might be on the exam.
Please don’t leave it to the day before
I know we all do it, some to a lesser extent than others; but, you need to do a lot more studying than the day before the exam. Cramming isn’t a great way of learning. You shouldn’t have to re-learn all the stuff they taught you earlier in the course the day before the exam. Get in the habit of reviewing and studying regularly, and not just the day before.
Write out your notes
Take notes in class, but then try writing out your notes when you review and study. Writing out your notes can help you filter out the less important things and just focus on the more important material. This process also helps you remember the material.
Actually look at your notes
It doesn’t just cut it to write out your notes, you need to go over them. Going over them means after your classes, the next day read over those notes you made, then a week later, then the next week, and so on until you are most likely just doing a light read over of your notes before the exam and already know the material. It is also of valuable to hold on to those notes after your done with the course; you never know if they will come in handy for later classes where you have to review previous concepts.
If you were to do all these things, chances are you will get a better result on your finals. These things are not hard – they just take a little bit of willpower everyday (and trust me for your really hard class it will be worth it). If you want more help with studying, read these exam preparation tips.