Staying Organized for Exam Studying

Another exam season is here. You’re probably thinking that it came way too fast! Whatever your area of studies is, whether you’re a student at law clerk colleges or sustainable architecture colleges, staying organized during the final exam period, is crucial to your success at the end of the term, and can make the difference between finishing at the top of your class and a disappointing grade.

Below are some tips to help ensure that you stay on the right track and perform well during your final exam week.

Stay healthy, both mentally and physically!

If your brain is lacking energy, your body won’t function properly. The final exam period is not the time to skip meals or eat junk food, like chips. If you really need a snack, try nuts instead. They’re good for your brain. Take breaks! In general, make sure to eat well and follow your regular eating schedule. This will help you avoid getting sick or feeling lethargic when you need your brain in top shape. You should also do your best to avoid unnecessary stress. It’s normal to feel stressed about important exams, but by keeping a positive attitude about them (“I’ll do my best, I have confidence in my skills”), you can avoid putting unnecessary pressure on yourself.

Eliminate distractions

Shut off your phone. If you need your laptop for notes, disable your internet connection. If you’re tempted to log onto Facebook, you’ll receive an error message that will remind you of what you should be doing. If you still find yourself distracted (and need a drastic solution), try asking someone you trust to temporarily change the password to your wi-fi connection.

If you live with roommates, make sure they know that you need space and silence to be able to study. If your apartment is too noisy, try relocating to a library.

Lastly, make sure your study space is clear of any distractions, like extra papers or garbage. At the end of each study session, clean up your workspace. Your brain will feel uncluttered, which can be comforting psychologically.

Create a plan

Spend the first half hour of study time preparing yourself mentally by figuring out what you need to study, and how much time you have. Divide the work up over that amount of time. If it helps, make a list of the topics you need to cover, and cross each one off as you complete it. This ensures that you don’t get stuck on one concept and spend your entire study time on it. You can also make a plan that encompasses several days of studies. In that case, make sure to reserve the last day before your exam for a full review.

Draw pictures or talk about your studies with someone

Draw a chart or image that pertains to your studies. Even if you study a topic like business management training, there are ways to condense the information into a graphic that’s easier for your brain to remember than pages and pages of words. Try a simple flow chart, for example. Don’t be afraid to use some colour! You can also try talking about your studies with someone. You’d be surprised how much easier it is for information to stick in your head when you verbalize it out loud. Try meeting up with a friend from your program and talking out your responses to questions. You’ll quickly realize which concepts you understand, and which you may need to spend more time on.