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Some practical study tips for upcoming midterms

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Fiona Fischer, Editor

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We all know that time of year right before midterms when many teachers are trying to finish the current unit they are on while still trying to squeeze in review days. However, some teachers do not have time to review, or they feel that it is the student’s responsibility to review on their own.

Even if your teacher reviews in class, you may still need to find time to prepare on your own. This is where many students do not know where to start and what methods they should use in order to be as successful as possible on their midterm exams.

Here are a few ways to help you get started.

  • Organize: You should organize all of your notes from the year. Use colored sticky notes or tabs to separate subjects.
  • Plan your time: Start studying well before your exams. Start with the older material to refresh your mind and work your way up to the new material. Also, spend more time studying the subjects that you do not feel as confident with.
  • Create a study schedule: Print out, make, or buy a calendar where you can plan out when you are going to study. Use a different color for each subject to make each subject stand out.

Here are some tips for when you are ready to start studying.

  • Make flashcards: You can buy colored flashcards to separate topics. Also, rewriting the information can help you remember it.
  • If you have lingering questions, get them answered by teachers or your peers: Go to your teacher’s extra help sessions and ask them for extra practice.
  • Re-do classwork and homework questions: Re-doing questions can help you remember the process of doing them and the topic.
  • Do all of the study guides your teachers give you: Study guides resemble the type of questions that you will see on your exams and will help you remember old topics.
  • Create a study group: Sometimes your peers can answer questions that your teachers cannot, or they may be able to explain things better. If you form a study group, you all could come up with possible types of questions and quiz each other on them.
  • Draw pictures/come up with tricks to remember steps: Sometimes diagrams will help you remember how to do a problem. Mnemonic devices can also help you remember the steps to complete a problem or how to set it up.

When it comes time for exam day, there are some things you should do in order to be alert, awake, and ready for the exam.

  • Get a good night’s sleep: Sleep is important, your brain processes the information that you studied the night before best when you get a good night’s sleep.
  • Wake up early: Wake up early enough so you have time to eat and get ready for the exam.You do not want to be rushed and risk the chance that you will be late to the exam.
  • Eat a hearty breakfast: Make sure you eat fruit, protein, and not a lot of artificial sugar.
  • Pack a bag: Bring a string bag or other bag with a granola bar, water, plenty of pens or pencils, and whatever else you may need.

And finally, here are a few tips on what to do when you sit down for the exam.

  • Breathe: Take a few deep breaths before you start to calm you down and help you to focus.
  • Plan your time and take it slowly: Do whatever questions you know how to do first and go back to the ones you don’t know. This will help you answer all the questions and have time to check them over before time is up.  
  • Jot down a quick outline for any exam that has an essay or writing piece on it: Write down some notes for any essay question or writing piece when you sit down so you don’t forget important points that you want to include in your writing piece.
  • Look over the questions before you answer them: Sometimes looking over the questions beforehand can help you remember how to do certain questions and help you with those you don’t know.
  • Stay the whole time: Most people want to leave as soon as they are done with their exam, but by doing that, you are taking away time that you could be checking your answers.
  • Check your work: Checking your answers could make you realize a mistake you made or a wrong answer.

Good luck to everyone on their midterms next week.

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Some practical study tips for upcoming midterms