How to Handle Finals Week

Soon, you will be home, relaxing by a warm fireside if you’re up North or lounging by the pool if you’re down South. Before that moment comes, though, you’ve still got some final exams to take. Living off campus can make it difficult to study sometimes: rowdy roommates are pretty distracting as it is, and even more so when you’re living outside of your school’s bubble. Here are some general studying suggestions to help you stay focused off-campus and make sure you don’t spoil your time off with a bad report card:
Spend the day on campus
Meet a friend for lunch before you find a nice, quiet library to study it. The key here is spending several afternoons doing this, and doing it more than once for each test.  Spreading out your studies more in place of cramming beforehand gives exam material time to sink in. Instead of just learning information for the test, you’ll find that you’ve actually learned it. For some classes, this might not matter so much, but you’ll be glad you remember everything from Principles of Finance once you’re taking Advanced Financial Management.

Be able to say no

If you decide to do all your studying off campus, you have to essentially shut out your roommates. It’s easy to say yes when your friend challenges you to a game of NHL12, but it’s a problem when the challenge is issued at 12:00 A.M. and you have an 8:00 A.M. exam. Set up a schedule of what you want to review each day: if you’re ahead of your goals, then you can afford to take an extra break or two to hang out with friends. That said, your two biggest keys to success are studying and sleep, so don’t let your roommates cut too much into either.

Talk it out
One of the best ways to make sure you know something is to see if you can hold a conversation about it, so if a roommate has some free time then ask them to help you study. Write down or print the exam material and have your roommate go over it with you, asking complex questions and trying to get you talking as much as possible. In classes that require in-depth knowledge, the best way to demonstrate mastery is to talk about it. If you’re answering your roommate’s questions with ease and you can discuss a subject at length, it’s time to focus on another topic.

Go to the last class
Though this should be a given, it’s possible you don’t go to every class: it’s easy to look at your alarm clock, think about how long your walk to campus seems, and then go back to sleep. Either way, be sure to be there for your last class, as odds are your teacher will discuss the final exam and maybe drop some hints or two. If a teacher says at the last class that a certain topic won’t be on the exam, you don’t want to waste 3 hours studying it. One of my friends even got extra credit just for showing up to their class. Showing up to the last class is a sign of respect for a teacher, so make the trek out to campus. It could be worth it.

Living off campus can make it more difficult to study and keep up with academics, but don’t let that stop you from doing well on exams. Now go hit the books and start studying!


Living Off Campus

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