Midterms are coming up and you probably don’t know where to start. Well here are 13 tips to get you ready and prepared so you have a plan to execute and do great on your finals.
1. Divide Your Time
Plan at least two weeks ahead. Everybody knows that planning and organization are essential for college exams. So make a plan ahead of time so you’re not stuck with little sleep the day before the test. Look over your study materials and make plans ahead for a study buddy or a study group. Block of the topics and subjects so you know when to study them. Get at least six hours of sleep before the exam.
2. Visit Office Hours
These might seem a bit intimidating especially if you didn’t get along with the professor but you’re really stuck visit the office hours and ask what chapters you should reread or where you find more information on the topic/question you’re stuck at.
3. Avoid Distractions and Procrastination
Yes, can you do it tomorrow? Probably but do you really want to? These excuses are going to make you keep putting the harder things off. Don’t avoid the main task and do little tasks instead. Do the hardest topic first. This gives you more time to understand and get ahold of the topic.
4. Stay Motivated
Color code your topics, chat with friends about the study subject. Change study positions. Motivation is key because that’s what keeps you going. You’re more likely to try harder if you set goals for yourself after a study break.
5. The State Of Flow
This method is used by a lot of intense studiers that really need to focus on a class. Focus and identify the goal of your study session. Set your goal to it but make sure it’s not too daunting of a task when it’s too difficult it can cause anxiety and cause for breaks. Make sure there are no distractions. Turn off your phone, tv, etc. Study. You’ll get in the zone and won’t try to break concentration but the state of flow is for long periods of studying.
6. Review Past Test
This allows you to understand what you have a good idea of what you understand and what you don’t. You can recheck the questions you got wrong and look at the topics and add them to your study session whilst you only need to do a quick overview of what you understood.
7. Study Time
You should break down your study subjects to about thirty minutes per topic before taking a break and moving forth to a new topic. These questions probably won’t make it to your long-term memory so focus on your short term memory and how to capitalize on this. At the end of the subject once you complete all the topics do an overview of everything to make sure you didn’t forget anything.
When taking notes you should only write down the key points of each subject and not fill it up with an excess of things that you already know or isn’t necessary. Focus on what you’re going to need if you’re going to do a quick study session. If you keep that in mind you’ll only write down the important parts. Try color-coding your notes as well to make the subjects pop out so it’ll be easier to find.
Review notes from the class you had or subjects you studied every evening. This allows you to refresh your brain on something that it might have forgotten earlier in the day and it’ll keep it in mind. Just remember to review it at the end of every day as a refresher course.
10. Have a designated Study Area
Now obviously you might have to change where you’re studying like when you go to study groups and are in desperate need of a new view. That’s fine, this is just to keep things in perspective. Organize and set aside your desk for only studying at this time. That means remove your makeup etc. This will also help you from trying to study in bed. Your study spot shouldn’t have distractions, should be well lit, and comfortable.
11. Mnemonic Devices
You probably remember some from elementary or middle school when you first heard of PEMDAS. So if it worked then what’s stopping you from trying it now? Mnemonic devices are a great way to focus on the material. Use this device for key concepts, sequences, etc. Just make it unique by having it something you can remember and study the mnemonic device. This will come in handy during testing. This is an easier way to keep the concepts in your brain and you can try to remember it almost anywhere so it’s a great study tool.
12. Teach Others
Teaching someone the subject you’re trying to learn is an effective way to learn the material yourself. This helps you get a better understanding of the subject you’re trying to learn and remember while allowing someone else to understand the basic concepts of the subject. This is also a great way to get the course refresher before exams and help out another fellow student or future student. This also allows you to figure out what concepts you understand and what concepts you need to go back and study again.
So many times people tend to break down tasks to figure out what they need to work on, what they should do, and what’s harder for them to learn as well as what’s easier. Even if you’re doing a task it’s still procrastination if you’re only knocking off the smaller tasks and waiting to do the more daunting task. Stop that. You can do the smaller simpler task at the end once you complete a difficult task and you don’t have to be short on time to do the task you should’ve actually focused on. If you’re worried or feel anxious about studying a certain topic start with that topic but break it down to make studying the subject simple.