Wednesday, 27 Jan 2021
Career Education

Surviving Last Year at College: 8 Study Tips

The last year at college is indeed a transitional phase. On one side, you want to grab every opportunity to enjoy your college experience. On the other hand, you want to prepare yourself for the responsible future ahead. There is a world of possibility out there, but first, you need to graduate.

There is no need to sugarcoat things. The finals are going to be tough. But the earlier you start to accept it, the better you can prepare. Here are some tips that can guide you to ace your last year’s exams.

1. Review Notes Every Day

You might have already heard countless times that it is a bad idea to save studying for the last. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to start only a month before. The better approach would be to review what the lectures covered every single day. If you have any pressing assignments, it won’t hurt to consult for some help. This will give you more time to go through summaries of what you were taught.

This way, when you get back to it before exams, you are revising rather than studying it from scratch. If you can find more time, it would also be useful to do monthly revisions to get the best returns on your efforts.

2. Prioritize Challenging Subjects

Of course, you need to perform equally well across all subjects. But if there are few majors that are particularly relevant to your career ahead, you want to ensure that you get things right. Moreover, you might also be lagging in some subjects, which might require more of your attention.

The same logic applies to tests, as well. Not every test carries the same weight. Instead of committing equal time for each subject and quiz, you need to identify the one that demands the most effort from your side and allocate time accordingly.

3. Reduce All-Nighters

We have all been there. After having two weeks to prepare for a test, you are suddenly left with two days, and you cram for both nights. Surprisingly, you get a decent grade. So the next time, you assume that you can pull off the same trick by just studying for two days.

Be it for submission, test, or even all-night partying, these sleepless nights can harm you more than you imagine. If you’re not careful, the exhaustion will catch up with you. And it will affect all parts of your life, not only academics.

Reduce All-Nighters

4. Know When to Say No

In the final year, the stake of you performing well in academics is relatively high. That said, you are also always surrounded by attempts to make the most of your final year in college. While saying “yes” to a night out is indeed fun at the moment, in hindsight, you might be wasting precious time that could have covered a few study sessions. As much as it is tempting, you need to work on your willpower and prioritize activities that will be worthwhile in the long run.

5. Get Out of the Social Media Bubble

Distractions are not limited to hanging out with friends. As much as the internet is the best friend, it could also be your worst enemy during your final year. With handling tasks on multiple devices and dividing your attention to all, in all possibility, you could miss some critical piece of information.

But since you cannot altogether avoid the use of smart devices, you might as well download some apps and website blockers. Much like the devices, it is about smart studying. It is better to spend 20 minutes focused than 2 hours distracted.

6. Familiarize With the Test Formats

There is a reason why experts recommend practice tests before exams. It will help you study specifically for the content and understand the test format. When done right, you will also be able to replicate the conditions and timing of the exams. This practice will allow you to focus on particular areas where you need more help.

If you have more time on your hands, you can consult your professors on the exam aspects that you find difficult.

7. Invest in Networking

As we mentioned, being a final year student is not only about academics. You also have to reach out for opportunities ahead. And there is no better place than college to plant the seeds for your career ahead. Ensure that you have an excellent social and professional network in place, both with your college mates and professors.

Do not limit yourself to a career path in your major alone. Talk to your college officials and find out what other routes you can pursue with the degree.

8. Take Help When Offered

You cannot get your degree on your own. While the internet is a reliable source of help, your college also has resources that can tremendously help you achieve your goal. After all, that is what universities are for. Such support could manifest in any number of ways.

It might be from one of your friends offering notes on a lecture you missed. Or a professor extending their office hours. It could even be your roommate finally doing the grocery shopping. Though they might appear trivial, these small aspects could make a lot of difference at the end of the day. Keep an eye out for any guidance, and when needed, do not hesitate to reach out as well.

Being a student comes with a long line of challenges. However, these are manageable when you have the right support systems in place. While you might not be able to foresee every challenge, having an action plan for your learning sessions is a great place to get started.

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