We are officially in the Spring season. The completion of the Fall/Winter academic session is near. It can be a very exciting time of year with thoughts of warm weather, the summer break, and the anticipation of summer plans that lie ahead, especially after our ling winter. Students will need to channel this excitement and begin preparing for their final exams.
Preparing for exams should be a process that coincides with the start of the course. Taking proper notes is vital and highlighting key points as the class progresses is essential. Understanding the course material and being able to effectively communicate that in an exam format is also important to a student’s success. It is easier to review course material before an exam rather that attempting to learn the course material for the first time.
Since many students will experience having two exams in two days or two exams in one day, practicing good organizational and time management skills will be beneficial during this time. Organizing times specific to each exam and knowing the exam format (multiple choice, true/false, essay questions, short answer) can help maximize study time in preparing for exams. Asking the instructor questions about the upcoming exam may prove to be helpful although the answers students receive may not be as specific as they would like them to be.
Finding the right place to study is crucial to exam preparation. Students should avoid distractions as much as possible so they can focus on the task at hand. Distractions such as cell phones, television, and the computer/tablets can be detrimental to studying. Even family, friends or roommates can be disruptive. Students must determine what works best for them. Choose a location that is comfortable, has adequate lighting, and has a minimal amount of distractions.
Organizing the course material into sections or points covered in the course while developing study sheets is imperative when preparing for exams. Predicting questions and reviewing previous exams if available in the library can be very useful too. Developing strategies that best suits the student’s needs for exam preparation can be challenging and it may take some time to establish what works best.
A valuable resource available for students is the free learning skills workshops presented by Brock University’s Student Development Centre. Workshops offered focus on such things as: Preparing for your Exams, Exam De-stressing, How to Write Multiple Choice Exams and Last Minute Exam Preparation. For more information regarding the learning skills workshops please visit brocku.ca/sdc/learning/workshops.php.
Since it can be very hectic preparing for exams, students must remember to reward themselves with a break. Attempt to choose them at appropriate times as this can enable students to remain sharp and not to be overwhelmed with too much information.
So what are you waiting for? Get studying and best of luck on your exams!