The semester is almost over and I’m loaded with four finals in the same week. How do I study for each one without going crazy, and how do I make sure I get good grades on each?
Stuck in the muck
It’s easy to be overwhelmed, especially at the end of the semester when class work is coming to a head. Now is the time that you must prove that you know your stuff.
Hopefully, you’ve spent the last few months going over the material each week so that you’re not too overloaded. It’s easier to study things you’ve gone over on a weekly basis.
With that said, gather your notes together and make up questions from your notes. I like to use index cards. Teachers often give you a list of topics from the chapters to study. Make up note cards in the form of questions for that, too. I have spent an entire day putting together my note cards. Yes, it’s a lot of work, but the payoff is substantial. With the questions written down, and the answers written on the back of each card, you’re not only learning when you later study the cards, but frankly, when you are writing the questions and answers down in the first place.
Choose a room to complete your cards. Let’s say you have chosen your bedroom. For the first question, connect it with the picture hanging above your bed. Every time you think about this question, and its answer, no matter where you are studying, you are remembering the picture above your bed. Sound strange?
Strange, yes, but definitely helpful. Now, every time you look at that question, you will remember the picture above your bed and something about it. Whether it’s the color or the pattern, or the picture itself, the picture will remind you of the question as well as the answer.
Go around the room and make sure all questions are mentally labeled with an item. As a key, write the name of the item (in this case, the picture) on the corner of the question side of the card to remind you. And make sure you use a different room to label your cards for the other three classes.
As much as possible, write down the answers to your questions as you study them, as if you are already taking the test rather than merely going through them in your mind. That extra step pays dividends in your memory bank.
On the day of the test, leave your cards at home. Get to class early and use the time you have to emotionally prepare. Think positively, and prepare yourself for a terrific grade.
You can do it.