March 19, 2007 5:15 PM
Midterms can be a pain, but there are a few things you can do to make your life easier before, during and after exams. After about the first week of school, when you have finally weeded out what classes you are going to take for the semester, it is a good idea to check out how your midterms are spaced out. If you have three during the fifth week of school, you will want to anticipate this and start studying early. Also, going to office hours and clarifying topics you don’t understand during the week they were presented is much more effective than having a laundry list of concerns during the review session. This allows some time for the information to settle and makes your studying right before the exam more like a review and less like a night of cramming.
However, we all get caught up in campus activities and weekly assignments, and sometimes it isn’t easy to make it to office hours or even keep up with readings. If you are in a situation where you are cramming for a test, I think the best way to approach it is to make a list of priority topics, and then go through it until you understand everything on the list. Kind of understanding something, especially for math and science classes, usually doesn’t help me much. Remember to get up, walk around, stretch, and eat something good while you are studying. And of course, get a good night’s rest before the exam. This will help more than anything!
Finally, one thing I learned the hard way as a freshman is that unlike some classes in high school, there is no break after an exam. The course keeps on going, and while it is good to do a little celebrating when exams are over, be sure you don’t fall behind! Hope this advice is useful and good luck with your midterms!
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