The season is upon us. It is the season that we simultaneously love and hate: finals season.
On one hand, we have the stress of finals, projects, and grade-saving. On the other, we have the magical holiday season, gratitude all around, beautifully chilly weather, and great food.
Today, I’m going to give you a step-by-step guide to prepare and study for finals without burning out or dying of stress.
Step 1: Block Your Calendar
Go to your Google Calendar and create a calendar titled “calendar blocking” (this is so it doesn’t clutter your event calendar). Then, start blocking out all the different non-negotiables in your day. This includes things like: sleeping, meals, going to school, scheduled meetings, etc. Then, take a moment to look at how much white space you have left. Within that time, block out workflow periods where you can study. Here’s a look at my blocked calendar for this week including study workflows:
Step 2: Define your Tests
Now that you know you have time blocked out to study, you need to figure out what exactly you will be studying. For each exam, figure out the following: When is the test? What is the test format? How much will the test be worth? Is it curved? How much time will we have to complete the exam? What material is on the exam? Write this down on a sheet of paper or in your planner.
Step 3: Evaluate your Confidence
For each class, create a list of topics that will be on the exam. Then, put a number from 1-10 next to each topic to rank confidence level. Ten would mean that you understand the topic completely and don’t really need to study it, and 1 would be that you barely remember that topic at all and have minimum understanding of it.
Step 4: Determine the Method
Next to each of those topics, determine the best method to study the topic based on its content and your confidence levels. Some ideas for study methods include the following:
Step 5: Create a Routine and Execute
Create a study routine that works for you to fill those blocks of time. You can use the Pomodoro Method or some variation to complete your work, or you could try starting with work-based, moving to study-based, and continue alternating. Figure out what works best for you and will make the most of the energy you have for studying.
I hope these tips helped and I wish you all the best of luck on your final exams!