We are now in the home stretch of the semester! It is about time to be hitting final exams. And while you may be feeling another sharp increase in stress right now, this time in the semester also brings excitement for the end of the term and that relaxing Christmas break. But don’t lose your focus! Now is the make or break time in your classes.
A few things for you to consider as you round out the rest of the school year:
- Keep yourself healthy – this time in the year we spend a lot more time indoors due to the colder weather. Make sure that you are practicing washing your hands often (or using hand sanitizers), having good respiratory etiquette (sneezing into a tissue or your elbow, not your hands), and stay home or in your room if you are not feeling well. It is tempting to want to come to class even when you are ill, for fear that you will miss something, but your classmates and professors will be glad you chose to stay home. If you are ill, go to the health center.
- Make sure to manage your time well – there are a lot of assignments that will be due at the end of the semester; try not to get bogged down with them. Breaking them into smaller chunks and working on pieces at a time will help you use the smaller pockets of time you have available during the week. This is especially true when you begin studying for your finals. It may be better to study your material for an hour at three different times during the week, than to wait and study the material in one three-hour chunk.
- Know what finals will look like – Some professors weight finals heavily while for others they are no different than other exams. Some final exams are cumulative across the entire semester, and others only cover the last sections’ worth of material. If professors don’t talk about the content or weight of your finals exam in class, ask them 1.5 to 2 weeks ahead of time. This will help you study the right material and schedule study time appropriately for each exam.
- Schedule your trip home with your final schedule in mind – Faculty are not allowed to move your final exam to a time other than its scheduled time, so don’t ask. Be sure to book your flight or train home well after your last final. Don’t forget to account for the time you will need to pack.
- Make sure to have fun – stress relief is huge during these time periods, so make sure to schedule in some fun. But be reasonable. Going to a movie at the theater might not be the best use of time since it takes a while to travel there, get your seat, see the movie and come home. But watching a movie in your friend’s room might be a better, time-friendly option. Be smart in how you choose your stress relievers.
Best of luck to you all as you conquer the next few weeks, and have a great Christmas!
Coordinator of Academic Advising