#OWNFINALS: Study Tips + Tricks for Success

Unfortunately, I’m no Ned Bigby with a school survival guide, but as an avid studier, I know numerous ways to study for finals ++ have tips for success! There are several different study techniques out there — there’s no *right* or *wrong* way, but the technique you choose can really make a difference. Below are 7 study techniques + tips [with a crucial bonus tip], to try if you feel your method isn’t working or you want to try something new —

1] Rewrite Your Notes

I have rewritten my notes since the 7th grade + I can tell you, it pays off. I will be frank + admit it’s very time-consuming. However, if you spread the workload out over two weeks prior to your exam + rewrite one to two lectures every day, you’ll feel less overwhelmed by the amount you need to rewrite. I personally recommend this for classes which are heavy on memorizing information + less application-based.

2] Practice

We all know practice improves our performance. So, for classes such as calculus, statistics, or accounting, which are almost entirely application-based, it can be best to study by applying your skills + knowledge to practice problems. Your textbook should have tons of practice problems, so take advantage of them! Additionally, you can redo lecture examples + homework problems. In doing this, you can discover your weak areas + focus on mastering those. Finally, toward the end of your studying [when you’re feeling pretty prepared] + at least a day before the exam, take the practice exam [if given] + use it to gauge the focus of the rest of your studying.

3] Teach Out Loud

It may feel really strange to talk to yourself while you’re studying, but it is beneficial. For classes such as biology + chemistry where you have systems + reactions to memorize, this can be a beneficial way to study. If you have a whiteboard in your room or one at the library, use it to write out the system you need to memorize + explain what each part of it does. Pretend you’re teaching someone else or even better, grab some classmates or your roommate + teach them. Not only are you helping others, but you’re helping yourself by sharing your knowledge + proving that you can explain the processes in a system or parts of a reaction. Additionally, for any class, it can be beneficial to teach others because you’re resolidifying the information for yourself as well.

4] Read Your Notes Out Loud

If you typically only need to reread your notes to study, crank it up a notch + read them aloud. Research has shown reading out loud enhances your memory of the information you’re processing, on account of the production effect — found here.

5] Focus on Key Points + Arguments

This is mainly for classes which require you to remember numerous readings. When you’re originally assigned a reading, it’s beneficial to outline it or highlight key points throughout. Then, when it’s time to study, make a word document containing each reading with its central purpose, main arguments, + key points. If you want a greater chance of remembering this information, once the document is made, you can rewrite it or read it aloud!

6] Use Online Resources

Take advantage of free study sources such as Quizlet! Quizlet is a great way to study, especially if your exams are heavily vocabulary//definition-based. Additionally, when you create your own Quizlet set, you’re aiding yourself by typing out all the definitions. You’re essentially studying twice, once when you make it + second when you use//practice the set!

7] Use University Provided Resources

If your major contains more papers than exams, take advantage of your student writing help center! Even if you’re a phenomenal writer, it’s always beneficial to get a second opinion. They could catch something that you missed or open your mind to a new perspective. Colleges also tend to offer a math assistance center, so take advantage of that as well! Always remember there is nothing wrong with asking for help.

Additionally, we highly suggest attending office hours — professors + teaching assistants are there to help you +they’re required to hold office hours, so you might as well take advantage of them! Additionally, becoming a recognizable face to your professor or TA is extremely beneficial as you can form a relationship to feel more comfortable in class or when asking for help in the future. Whether you’re struggling overall or just stuck on one question, don’t be afraid to ask for help.

8] Rest Up

Finally, you’ve heard it a million times, but we’ll never stop saying it, you need sleep. Two hours of sleep after an all-nighter is not sufficient — ideally, you’ll want to get around eight hours. All-nighters do not work — you’ll end up putting all this effort into cramming everything in the night before + your mind will be so tired//hazy in the morning that you won’t even remember the information you studied! Do yourself ++ your body a favor, skip the all-nighter + get an adequate amount of sleep!

For more tips on owning finals without sacrificing your health, check out this previous post! With these new tips for success + study options, grab your study buddies [maybe some CHAARGies] + get to work!

If your girl gang is studying together, snap a pic + share it with us on your CHAARG Insta using #OWNFINALS. Happy studying, go show those finals who’s #inCHAARG ; ).

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