Ten tips for preparing for finals

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By Nicolette Audino

1.  START STUDYING EARLY: 
I will admit that I am the student that always seems to be spending the two nights before an exam cramming for it and staying up long hours into the night.  I vow to be better this term and so should you.  Start prepping right now.  Then, when your exams come in two weeks, you won’t be so stressed out the night before.
2.  MAKE A KILLER OUTLINE:
I find the best way to study for an exam is to lay out everything that you need to study into categories.  Not only will it help keep your thoughts organized, but it may help you group together key ideas and points that you will need to write an essay.
3. USE YOUR FRIENDS/CLASSMATES:
Study with friends in groups and talk about the topics that don’t seem to be clicking in your head.  They might be able to understand it and explain it to you better than you can explain it to yourself.
4. MEET WITH YOUR PROFESSOR ONE ON ONE:
 It is important to discuss an exam with your professor beforehand because you might get a better understanding of the layout and the important material to study.  If you missed a class or two, you should be meeting with your professor to have him/her explain any key ideas that you still can’t seem to understand.
5. READ YOUR READINGS AGAIN:
More times than not over the course of a class, you are assigned a lot of reading assignments.  Even though you have already read them, read them over again just to stimulate your brain and refresh what you read.  It will stick with you and you may understand things that were confusing to you before.
5. GET SLEEP:
Don’t stay up late every night even if you have a lot of work to do.  Plan your day so that you can get your eight hours of rest for the next few weeks so you are rested well for the big day.
7.  PLAN FOR SOME FREE TIME:
Let’s face it, it is the end of school and it is the last time you are going to be seeing your best friends for the next six to seven weeks.  Make sure you plan some time to hang with friends, just relax or do an activity that you love.  It will help keep you calm and relaxed and if you plan time to do it, you won’t be thinking about what you are missing out on.
8. STAY CALM:
There is nothing worse than panicking before an exam.  If you take a few deep breaths and stay as cool and collected as possible, your brain will be more ready to take in information than it will if you are overly stressed.
9.  BE CONFIDENT:
Even if you have to fake it, go into that exam like you are going to kill it.  Attitude is everything – if you believe you can do it, you can!
10. MAKE STUDYING YOUR NUMBER ONE PRIORITY:
You may have some free time with friends, you have to eat and have you have other commitments, but during finals time, studying and getting a good grade should be your very first priority.  Get through it, rock it and you will be free to do anything you want as well as getting an A!

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