Summer finals are approaching. Here are some tips to make your experience more productive and less stressful.
1. Prepare for the week ahead.
- If you haven’t already, take a look at the finals week schedule and start blocking out time not just for exams, but for studying, too.
- The UA Counseling Center offers time management ideas to help get you started.
- Take some time to relax and recharge this week.
2. Remember it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
- With multiple tests in one week, it’s tempting to focus on one course at a time and wait until the day before to “cram” for a test. This isn’t the most effective approach because spending a lot of time on one subject can cause you to lose focus. It also can create more stress. So, start studying well in advance of a test, and as you study, switch up your subject every half hour or so to keep your brain fresh.
3. Take a break and get moving.
- While you’re powering through the week, remember to take study breaks to rest your mind and body. Experts recommend physical activity to help relax. Take a walk around the Quad for some fresh air or practice yoga. Light physical activity will help clear your mind.
- Practicing breathing exercises is another great way to make the most of your study breaks. Here’s a longer list of ways to manage stress.
4. Don’t forget to rest.
- Nearing crunch time, many students tend to over-exert themselves by studying all night before a big test. But studies have shown that sleep deprivation can negatively affect a person’s memory. So prioritize getting quality sleep every day.
- The Counseling Center has several tips to help with sleep.
5. Eat well and drink plenty of water.
- Just like sleep is essential to optimal brain functioning, eating nutritious food is important to perform your best. Healthy snacks can be found all over campus. Look for foods high in fiber and protein without too much sugar, which can cause you to crash. All dining halls and on-campus shops offer a variety of healthy options.
- And don’t rely on coffee to stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water.
6. Don’t forget about your friends.
- You’re not in this alone! Study in groups and make the most of your study breaks by spending time with friends. For example, after finishing a long study session or taking an exam, grab a (healthy) bite to eat with some friends, or take a walk together.
- If you notice a friend struggling, check in and see what they need. Refer them to the Counseling Center or the Capstone Center for Student Success if they need help.