Your Guide to a Successful Exam Season

Focus on the “Why”

Recognize All Your Achievements

Take small breaks while studying

Have a well established study technique

Create a breakdown of your topics

Courses can be very content heavy and it can be difficult to learn all the necessary information. To help you stay organized and on track with your studying, try to create a breakdown of the topics for each course. This will make studying easier and will motivate you to continue preparing for exams.

Find better ways to retain information

Reading information over and over may not be the best way to learn and memorize important concepts. To better retain the information you are trying to learn, try to ask yourself questions about the content while you are reviewing a chapter. As well, it can be helpful to try to tie in the topic you are reviewing with other topics covered in the course. To practice course content even further you may create physical cue cards or flashcards on platforms such as Quizlet. Visual learners also have the option to watch videos related to their course content. Overall, these tips should allow you to have a broader understanding of the course content and improve your memorization skills to be better prepared for your exams.

Study in Groups

Not only can studying in groups help you improve your productivity, but it can also help you stay motivated by holding each other accountable. Try finding a group of you where that can help you learn new study habits, share ideas and discuss the course content. As well, some people study better when they “explain” a topic to a friend, since it allows them to fully understand it. Studying in a group will enhance your learning and help you feel supported during the exam season.

Take care of your physical health

Take breaks from electronic devices

Make sure you take time to rest your eyes from electronic devices. Since the start of the pandemic the use of screen time among the population has increased dramatically. Subsequently, the onset and progression of nearsightedness in the population has increased as well. This is why it’s important to put away all electronic devices from time to time and give your eyes a break. Try to take a 10 to 15 minute break from electronics every one to two hours to let your eyes rest.

Eat healthy

Eating healthy food is not only a pleasurable experience, but can also improve your studying! Studies have shown that eating healthy meals have been linked to higher grades, better memory and faster information processing. For example, foods that are rich in fibre and protein provide more energy and allow you to stay more focused and alert. As well, try to incorporate more fruits and vegetables that are rich in nutrients and will provide your body with the energy you need when preparing for exams.

Catch up on sleep

Lastly and most importantly, you must get enough sleep. It is a common trend among students to cram in all nighters and skip out on sleep in an effort to retain as much information as possible. However, when you don’t get enough sleep, you are actually doing the opposite. When we don’t get enough rest, our attention and focus drop, making it more difficult to retain information. This is why it is crucial to maintain good sleeping habits! Try to aim for at least 7 hours of sleep during your exam period to maintain your well-being and improve your studying.

Mental health

Create a schedule

If you are experiencing anxiety about writing your exams, organizing your tasks in a list or schedule may help ease your worries. Having your items in a list will ensure you don’t forget anything and clear your mind of any excess doubts and stress. Moreover, they can allow you to stay on top of your responsibilities and help you do better in your courses.

Try to do something you like

During exam season, try to spend time on yourself too. Do something you like or that makes you feel good. You can treat yourself to a delicious home cooked meal, go to the gym or do any other hobbies or sports you like. Try to find an activity that makes you happy and takes away from the stress of writing exams. Finding a little bit of time for yourself won’t take away from your studying and it will allow you to keep a sane mind during these stressful times.

Stay connected with friends and family

When the workload feels overwhelming, have a chat with a friend or family member. Talking with someone can help relieve stress and reduce negative emotions. The person you talk to may also help put things into perspective and motivate you to continue studying.

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
MSU Macademics

MSU Macademics

MSU Macademics is a service that advocates to improve the quality of education and celebrate teaching excellence at McMaster.