No More Cramming!

22 Nov

Cramming the night before exams is not only stressful, but also the least effective studying method. It is quite possibly the worst thing you could do to yourself during finals week. When you have three to four tests in one week, it’s important to spread out the studying accordingly, so you’re not attempting to memorize a semester’s worth of knowledge in one nightmarish all-nighter.


To aid you in this endeavor, I have created a simple 10-day guide on how to split up the studying for each class. I will use my classes from last year, my freshman year, as an example, but you can tailor the schedule to your classes accordingly.

CHEM 151 (chemistry)

MATH 129  (calculus)

COMM 101 (communication)

ENG 109  (English)


First, organize all of your notes, homework, and tests from each class into units (i.e. the chapters of each test). Be sure to make note of what is required for each class’ final, whether it be a cumulative test, final project, or paper.

Chemistry – 4 units, cumulative test

Calculus – 5 units, cumulative test

Communication – 1 non-cumulative test, study guide given

English – final paper




Second, once you have everything you need to study and complete, you can start spreading out the work and assigning a to-do list for each day. This is the key step. Create a study schedule and stick to it. (See the example study schedule below that I created for myself last year).



I use little sticky notes on the right side of my notes to mark important information, so I know what I should review on the night before the exam.


On the day of your exam, the most important thing to do is eat a good breakfast!  No one can concentrate and perform their best if they have a grumbling stomach. Be sure to fill up on fresh fruit and whole grains, stay away from sugary cereals and fried foods which will make you feel bloated. Relax and take a deep breath before walking into the classroom; then smile and know that you’re going to do great because you got a full night’s sleep and prepared well.

— Kaelyn Garner

CONNECT: Still have questions about study tips? Want to know how to find a tutor? Just holler. Tweet your questions and we’ll respond! @WildcatConnect #WildcatConnections


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