Top Ten ways to effectively study for finals


Marianna Marsden

(photo illustration)

The final countdown begins: less than one week until we take the tests that make or break our grades.

Let me tell you straight up: Finals are hard. Not just “need to study for a little bit hard” but like “crying yourself to sleep” hard. But it doesn’t have to be this way. We compiled 10 study  habits that will (hopefully) lead to success.

**Disclaimer: If you don’t get an A, don’t blame us.

1. Find a stress release: Vital Climbing Gym is open 24 hours to members. It includes a study corner as well as indoor rock climbing rooms if you want to work in a climbing session or review those study notes before school. Working out can help you de-stress before you do another hour of review.

2. Take away all distractions: I know it’s hard to part with your cell phone. And TV. And your laptop. And any device that allows you to be connected to the deepest procrastination pit we call the internet. However, it makes it a lot harder to study if you are also playing QuizUp, texting your BFFL and constantly refreshing your Instagram feed. When studying, you need your full concentration. Have a family member hide your phone (don’t go looking for it) and study. It will be worth it when you get that passing grade.

3. Go to your quiet place: Located in Vista, The Yellow Deli provides a peaceful environment, comfortable seating and delicious food. It is the perfect place for studying in relaxation with a piña colada smoothie. Calming music and a cozy atmosphere make The Yellow Deli a great studying spot. Whether it’s your backyard or a coffee shop, finding a quiet place will provide you with unbreakable concentration.

4. Stay Energized: Studying while tired makes people more stressed and possibly violent in some cases. Instead of throwing your textbooks at the walls in frustration, take a quick power nap to ease your mind. Staying energized while studying ensures that you are getting the best possible preparation out of your valuable time. It is worth taking a quick break or stopping to get some Starbucks if it means you are going to be awake and absorbing more information later.

5. Chew Gum: Studies show that chewing gum helps improve concentration and focus when dealing with visual memory tasks.

6. Stay Organized: Create a schedule to keep track of what you are studying, and when. Keep all of your notes and resources together, sorted by subject. Outline your notes and highlight the main ideas. Keeping organized will help you study without having to constantly search for the last two pages of your outline.

7. Use Memory Games: Crafting flashcards, making up songs and creating acronyms can help you remember information. Memorization is key for those vocabulary sections on your finals.

8.  Practice: Practice makes perfect. Find practice tests online or make your own. Don’t only memorize formulas, but practice the problems as well.

9. Eat Well: Eating healthy is said to relieve stress, and by this stage in your finals studying, you are probably a teensy bit stressed. Food is energy–the healthier your food, the better you will feel. Putting unhealthy food in your body will make you tired and not motivated to study.

10. Get a good night’s sleep: It’s the night before finals. You have done all the preparation you can do. Instead of staying up until 2 a.m. reading the same chapters over and over, get lots of sleep to relax your brain. Wake up feeling rejuvenated–not unmotivated.