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GenTwenty’s final exam survival guide

Final exams

Congrats, fellow collegiate scholars! The end of your semester is near! With the end in sight, it can be difficult to focus on your classes,but do your best to remain on task. These last two or three weeks will likely fly by, so it’s important to be as motivated as ever.

Preparing for final exams is very similar to preparing for midterms, with the exception that this is your final effort to boost your grade. For this reason, finals are usually far more intimidating, as they are just that: final.

However, don’t let these exams scare you! Luckily, there are an abundance of ways you can best prepare for finals, even with the holidays distracting you. Here are some of the top ways to conquer your exams:

5. Remain driven
With the holidays unraveling this time of year, it proves to be difficult to keep your mind on track. Hopefully by now you have kept up with all of your readings, notes, and assignments. Continue doing this! Stick to your reading because these final chapters are likely going to be covered on the exam. If your final is cumulative, be sure to revisit chapters from the start of the semester. Keep quizzing yourself so your mind doesn’t wander and you stay motivated.

4. Study the format of the final exam
Take a few minutes of class to ask your professor what format you can expect the final to take. Is the exam cumulative or comprehensive? Will you have multiple choice questions, short-answers, or multiple essays? Or, will there be a mix of each? Knowing the format of your exam in advance will help break down the material and give a sense of how to study.

3. Attend your class’s review session
Usually, college professors will offer a review session during the class prior to your final exam. It’s important you attend this session because it’s time set aside for you to directly review the course material before your exam. You should attend the session with preconceived questions you might be having trouble with. This is your last opportunity to obtain information, so drill your professor with questions and take rigorous notes!

2. Use a study guide
Most professors will generate a study guide for all students. If not, definitely make the suggestion! Having a study guide will help focus your study material and also break down the material for you. Use your study guide as a calendar. For example, set aside two or three hours each day, and assign yourself a set number of questions from the study guide. This will help manage the material and also dedicate a balanced amount of time to each chapter.

1. Relax, breathe, and stay until the bitter end
Make the most of your exam time. Don’t rush through the questions in anticipation of finishing sooner. Rather, be mindful of your time, while also answering questions at a steady pace. Remember to relax and breathe. This is your final chance to end the semester positively, but cut yourself some slack!

Final exams can be brutal. Any college student knows finals are a week of pure anxiety, and the panic can cause fits of stress. Remember to take care of yourself as exam week approaches. Care for your mind, body, and soul while you prepare for the end. Twenty-somethings, it’s almost over! Hang in there!

About the Author

Rachael Warren (Tulipano)

Rachael is a University of Southern Maine graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a minor in Sociology. She remotely works full-time as a Senior Content Marketing Specialist for Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont. In her leisure time, Rachael enjoys traveling with her husband, finding the next Netflix series to binge, and taking too many photos of her dogs Jax and Kai. Rachael is obsessed with chapstick, favors the Oxford comma, and is a proud Mainer. You'll likely find her exploring New England + beyond.