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How to Prepare For Finals

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How to Prepare For Finals

Ashley Jackson, Journalist

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     With finals coming up fast, it’s understandable that most are starting to improve on their study habits or even just starting to study in general. The question is, what studying habits actually work?

     Before actually studying, it’s important to know what kind of learner you are and what works for you. Some people learn better with visuals: pictures, weird fonts, colorful pens, diagrams, etc. While others do better with association and memorization, like flash cards and mnemonic devices, there are also some who use less conventional techniques.

    “I translate those [classes] into Spanish because my brain processes things better when it’s in Spanish,” Sophomore Shannon Gutierrez says about her studying habits, “I just think it’s easier to understand and if I don’t know something in English, I’ll be able to translate it and I’ll be good.”

 

     Once you’re ready to study, it’s also important to have a quiet environment with proper lighting. If you can, maybe go to a new place. A change of scenery can help you prevent getting distracted. Also, the music you listen to can affect you. Some psychologists recommend listening to the soundtrack of video games as those are designed to keep you engaged.

   As for the studying itself, there are many techniques to be used. One is called the ‘Pomodoro Technique’ where you work for 25 minutes, then take a 5 minute break and then work for another 25 minutes and repeat until the fourth time where you take a longer break, for about 20 to 30 minutes. It was developed in the late 1980’s and there are easily usable apps like ‘Focus keeper free’ and ‘flora’.

    If you have trouble focusing, even in small bits, there are other apps to help with that as well. Apps like ‘Self-Control to Focus’ and ‘Go Cold Turkey- Be Focused’ can help you avoid using your phone and keep you focused on your work. Another way to stay focused is to give yourself incentives. For example, once you memorize 5 vocab words than you can have some candy or say 15 minutes of internet and so on.

Another way to stay focused is to enlist the help of your friends. If you have another friend that needs help studying, then you can become each other’s accountability partners. Sometimes it’s easier to make sure someone else is doing their work than yourself.

    No matter how well you study, however, it won’t matter if you don’t get enough sleep or have enough energy to do well on your tests. It’s important to eat the right foods for energy and to get enough sleep or else you’ll be falling asleep during your tests. Some people like to have a little bit of sugar right before a test to give them a little kick, but too much can send you into a sugar crash during a test.

    As for the actual test, if you’re lucky enough to have multiple choice then there are some strategies to help you out. One is narrowing down your choices. If you can look at an answer and say to yourself that option is not the right one then cross out that answer. Now, your chances go from 25% choosing the right answer to about 33%.

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In the end, it’s important to relax about your final. As long as you put in the work ethic, you’ll do well. Just remember to know what kind of learner you are, what studying techniques work for you and that you’re in place where you’re able to focus.

 

Ashley Jackson, Journalist

This year, Sophomore Ashley Jackson hopes to do better academically than she has previous years as well as come closer to figuring out her college plan...

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