Five Study Habits for Finals Week

Notebook, highlighters, and glasses all needed for studying. (Photo via Pixabay)

Aliyah Williams
Contributing Writer

For many ESU students, the countdown to winter break is shadowed by the stress of finals week.
But taking a final exam doesn’t have to be stressful, especially when good studying habits are being used.
“Most exams in college require you to go beyond memorization and understanding.
You have to apply concepts, describe and explain concepts and their concepts, compare and contrast, and at times analyze concepts,” said Dr Kelly McKenzie, associate professor and director of the university-wide tutorial program.
“That’s why it’s important to engage your curiosities when preparing for an exam by creating examples, asking questions and applying the concepts to your own experiences and memories.”
Here are five simple study tips to help students get ahead before the semester ends.
1. Find a Successful Study Method
There is not only one “right way” to study because not everyone learns the same way.
Many different methods exist that can help students understand information, such as making flashcards, taking practice quizzes and reciting problems out loud.
Combining these methods can also be effective in studying, but it is important to find out which method is best for individual learning.
2. Get Rid of Any Distractions
It isn’t easy to study in a loud or uncomfortable environment, so it is important for students to place themselves in a location where they will not be interrupted.
There are multiple places around campus for students to find these quiet and isolated areas, such as the silent study floor in Kemp Library and the private rooms in the Lenape residence hall.
But distractions aren’t only limited to people. Cell phones and other forms of technology can also be a distraction to many students.
Taking the time to separate social media usage from studying is an important way to be
successful.
3. Take Advantage of Tutoring
Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
The tutoring center, located at Rosenkrans Hall, is a great way for students to ask questions about material they may not understand.
“Reading, re-reading, memorizing material that just isn’t sinking in is frustrating and
overwhelming.
A tutor can help engage your curiosities,” said McKenzie.
Tutoring is free as a part of ESU’s tuition and fees, and the tutors are there to help students
succeed and do their best.
There is also the writing studio, located at Kemp Library, where tutors can help students with their final papers.
“The writing studio is a great study tool for all students with finals coming up,” said senior tutor Marissa Slowinski. “You can get tips and advice specifically catered to your writing strengths and weaknesses, and we can always help with those technical issues such as grammar and formatting.”
4. Make a Schedule and Don’t Cram
Be sure not to wait until the last minute to start preparing.
Keeping an organized study schedule can help students set aside the right amount of time to
focus, but it is also important to make time for hobbies outside of studying.
Allowing the information to sink in over time is typically more effective than trying to fit it all in right before an exam, and can help students to feel less stressed and more prepared.
5. Take Productive Breaks
Taking productive breaks during studying is important, but that does not include using social media and technology.
According to a 2019 study published by the Journal of Behavioral Addictions, cell phone usage during study breaks negatively impacts mental efficiency
. There are other ways besides using technology that can help students take productive breaks, such as listening to music, exercising, showering and meditating.
These five studying methods are beneficial for students who want to do well on their final exams.
Although the stress of finals week can seem overwhelming, there are ways for students to
prepare themselves so that they feel confident and can do the best they can.
For more information on studying tips, visit the Warrior Tutoring Center for the “Finals Finale,” running Dec. 6 to 8 from 2 to 4 p.m..

Email Aliyah at:
awillia131@live.esu.edu

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