By Jill Borowski
As finals draw near, what exactly are the best ways for students to prepare? Does basic hitting the books work? Or does rewriting notes work better? And, where should students study – in their dorms, or the library?
Some students find that having a quiet study sanctuary is the best way to be successful on final exams. Christopher Scally, a junior Information Systems major, says that the library is the best place to study.
“I think that the library here at school is the best place to get work done. It’s one of the few quiet places on campus that I can sit down and think. Plus, the librarians are really helpful if you need anything,” Scally said. Many students agree that the library is a good place to study. The library’s hours: Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. – 11 p.m., Friday 8 a.m. – 9 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. – 11 p.m., and Sunday noon – 11 p.m.
Students can find other comfortable places to study on campus, as well, including on the couches in the upper part of Hillwood Commons, and in the Tilles Center Atrium. Students who live in a “quiet dorm” will have an easier time studying since loud activity ends earlier than in the other residence halls.
“Studying on campus is always hard to do unless you’re in a quiet place. I personally found that there is a huge difference in say studying in Hillwood or studying in the stacks at the library,” said Robert Goldstein, a junior Accounting major. “I also find that there is a significant difference in what you’re doing while studying. Listening to music or watching television can affect memory retention,” he continued.
A tip when it comes to the actual studying is to make index cards. Jessica Asherian, a senior Psychology major, finds that index cards work well. “Flash cards help me retain information way better than just studying from a textbook. It helps me remember key points [rather] than just useless information,” she said. Other tips include rewriting notes, and producing audio notes. Some students who are auditory learners might record lectures and turn the recordings directly into notes to listen to later on.
Laura Fallon, a senior Music Performance major, stressed that timing is important. “Don’t wait until the last week to study—that would overwhelm anybody in general,” she said. “Organize subjects by which final comes first. Studying them in order allows you to knock them out quickly and effectively.” Fallon continued, “Lastly, separate different categories by subject. Studying a bunch of information all meshed together can make you forget key points that would be on an exam.”
Albert Scott, a junior Social Work major, says that he cannot have anything distracting him from studying. “If I have the TV on in the background or music in my ears, I just can’t concentrate. I find that it is much better to take some study breaks for a few minutes here and there, that way I can concentrate more.”
The students The Pioneer interviewed all had similar responses: make sure to concentrate on studying, take breaks to avoid getting overwhelmed, and avoid distractions. Make sure that you’re in a quiet place, clear your mind and de-stress as much as possible. Finals week ends on Dec. 18, and students will have a month off to relax and regroup before the spring semester begins on Jan. 20.