Testing Our Resolve: Tips for Facing Exams

Testing Our Resolve: Tips for Facing Exams
  • Opening Intro -

    When the weather gets cooler, most start thinking about the approaching holidays.

    But for college students, there is one thing standing between them and holiday merriment: exams.


While exams look vastly different depending on the class, they are alike in their ability to terrify students at every level. These tips for facing exams are here to help ease you into finals and get you to winter vacation sooner.


Most advice for facing exams revolves around studying. However, with a semester’s worth of notes in front of you, it can be hard to know where to start. Here are a few practical ways to get started.

Start Early

Sometimes, it isn’t just about the number of hours you spend studying, but the number of days. Allowing your mind to have multiple days to process the information will give your brain a better chance of retaining it. Studying for short bursts over the course of even a few days will give you a better chance than cramming.

Keep the Type of Exam in Mind

Different types of exams require something different of your brain, so you’ll want to study for them differently. If your exam is focused on information retention, flashcards, or rewriting notes are a good bet.

Essay exams require this definition-centered knowledge, but also an understanding of how the ideas connect to each other.

Assembling a group for discussion-based study sessions may help. If the exam is skills-based, you will need to find practice problems or get into the lab or studio for practice.

Cater To Your Learning Style

Are you a visual learner? Try color-coding your notes or rewriting the information on a chart. Auditory processor? Get a study buddy you can talk concepts through with. Kinesthetic?

Get up and walk around while you work. And never be afraid to come up with ridiculous neurotic devices to help you remember the important information.

Utilize Your Professors

Who better to help you face an exam than the one who made it? If you don’t know where to start studying or have a concept you don’t understand, you can ask them whether you are on the right track. Even if you’re just overwhelmed, they are usually happy to offer advice.

Your professors have office hours for a reason. Use them! Of course, just make sure asking for advice doesn’t turn into asking them to fix your problems for you. 

other valuable tips:

Take Care of Yourself

A sleep-deprived, underfed, and stressed out mind is at a disadvantage on test day. Allow yourself to get a decent night’s sleep every night, avoid skipping meals when possible, and don’t spend more than an hour studying without taking a break.

Above all, it’s always a good idea to remind yourself that the fate of your future does not ride on one exam. The less pressure you put on yourself, the less likely you are to blank when you sit down for exams.

Image Credit: tips for facing exams by envato.com

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Categories: Study Tips