Stress. That is a really big word. And a really big part of every college student’s life. It may not mean the same thing to you as it does to me, and none of us react to stress the same way. But the truth is when it comes to midterms every college student deals with stress.
The stress of not learning everything you need to learn. The stress of how your midterm is going to affect your grades. The stress of losing motivation for the rest of the semester.
It’s always going to be there. But I wanted to introduce you to my study techniques, my time management tricks, and the tools that help me power through midterms with minimal emotional scarring.
*As an HP Millennial Influencer Program member, I have been given products and material to use & share as I see fit. However, any opinions expressed are my own and reflect my actual experiences.*
Why Mid-Terms Exacerbate College Stress
I get it, mid-terms can be terrifying. Especially for those students who get test-taking anxiety. But there are ways to prepare that can help you retain more information and be more confident in your test-taking abilities. Even if you get those moments where you freeze. Read on for my tips for studying for exams.
Exam Studying Tips to Reduce College Stress
Keep Your Study Spot Organized
What I mean by that is have folders or binders in which you keep all of your notes organized and in their own place. I use my desk as my study space and I use file folders to organize any printouts I may have, to-do lists, etc. I also am sure to have a calendar that is visible in my study space so that I can easily keep track of upcoming due dates or exams.
Reread Your Notes From Lectures & Chapters
I’m not even going to lie. I start this process, typically, two days before exam day. Anything before that and I notice that I get myself too worked-up and I end up doing worse on an exam.
While rereading everything, I highlight the most important facts and make notes in the corners on subjects that I’m unsure of or questions that come to mind about the material.
Create a Study Guide
I use the outlining method to create study guides and it is very, very helpful. But I always make sure that I do this after I have read over my notes and made note of the topics I know will be on the exam and the topics that I know I need more practice on.
Sounds crazy, but it’s true. Pick a kind of gum that you don’t typically chew. Only chew this gum when you’re studying and then again when you take the exam. The act of chewing the gum and tasting the familiar flavor can help you recall information from your study session. Don’t ask me how this works, but it does.
Listen to Classical Music
I’ve done this too. Listening to music helps to keep my mood elevated while studying and keeps me awake. But, if I pop on my favorite tracks I become more attuned to the lyrics than my notes.
Classical music has been shown to improve retention rates among students, and the lack of recognizable lyrics helps you to stay more focused on your studying than the music.
I love using the Bluetooth speaker function on my HP printer for listening to music while studying. (And cleaning, or just sitting around the house really.)
P.S. If you read through the rest of the post you’ll be able to enter into my super-awesome giveaway to win your very own HP AMP printer thanks to HP and the HP Millenials Influencer Panel.
Don’t Forget to Take a Break
Studying for five hours straight is actually going to put you in a worse position come exam time. If you regular, short breaks every 30-45 minutes, you’ll end up better off.
When taking a break, do something that allows your mind to rest. Wash some dishes. Switch the laundry. Have a snack.
Time Management Tips to Reduce College Stress
No doubt that lacking time management skills and techniques adds to college stress. But there are ways to fight back, even when you have like a million other roles that you fill in your life. (Yeah, that’s me.)
I’m a mom, a student, a girlfriend, a blogger, I have side hustles (like crazy), and I’m sure I’m missing a few. But, I still manage to get the grades I desire and minimize the amount of stress I go through in college.
There are two ways that I manage my time when it comes to studying and attending classes that have really allowed me to continue with my hobbies without taking away from my school time.
I cannot urge this enough. I have calendars for every role I play, as well as an overall calendar so that I don’t overlap responsibilities. In my overall planner, I “schedule” time for studying and I commit to it.
Technology is Your Friend
Yeah, I’m not your typical millennial. I don’t understand the purpose of social media and typically only use it for my blog. But it’s there. Smartphones are a whole other story. I grew up in that weird in-between stage where cell phones were just beginning to be a thing.
If you haven’t heard of Band, it’s freaking amazing for group projects and connecting with classmates. You can share files, chat, make plans to study, and so much more all in one app.
Todoist allows you to plan your to-dos according to what day you want to do it. No more general, running to-do lists.
My Favorite Tools for Minimizing College Stress
If you’ve read my past posts, I’ve talked a little bit about what I equip myself with at the beginning of the semester. But I’m going to reiterate a couple of them because these things literally save my sanity when it comes to being prepared. These two products are my must-have items each and every semester, no matter what courses I’m taking.
No one likes to have to search for the right notes when it comes to study time. Which is why I use one binder for all of my courses. Everything is neatly tucked into its own section, but no more scrambling when it comes to studying. No more searching for the right notes because you’re notebook isn’t in the right order. My FiveStar binder is amazing because it is so durable, and really allows for a little extra space when it comes to storing papers. And the rings don’t bust like the old-school binders.
It’s a little pricier, but if you consider the fact that it’s durable enough to last you at least 3 semesters, it’s well worth the price.
My Day Designer Planner
This is the most in-depth and versatile planner I have ever found. It even has little spots for weekly gratitude and must-do tasks. It helps me prioritize and break down every aspect of my day if I so choose. But it also allows me to jot little notes down for things I’d like to do for the day.
They come in weekly and daily planners, and if you order yours from Amazon right now (& haven’t purchased office products before on Amazon) you’ll get an additional 15% off. Again it’s a pricier item, but I wouldn’t steer you there if it didn’t work for me. Well worth it.
& Now It’s Giveaway Time!
I have been lucky enough to be a part of the HP Millennial Influencer Program and it is literally the most fun I’ve had with my blog. I’ve had a chance to test out new products that HP is launching and it’s great to know that my voice and opinions are being heard.
And because of this partnership that I have, I have been able to receive an HP AMP 100, valued at $129, that I am giving away to one lucky reader!
The HP AMP is compact but super powerful. With a built-in Bluetooth speaker and charging port, it’s a techie’s best friend. The print and copy capabilities from my phone are so useful I can’t believe I’ve been using a different product this whole time.
Well, okay, I can. The HP AMP is a new product, so this is something you’ll definitely want to get your hands on.
The speaker on this thing is freaking incredible. I’ve had Bluetooth speakers before, but none as clear and crisp as this one. And loud too! Perfect for parties and get-togethers.
But don’t just take my word for it, enter today to win your very own HP AMP 100 and enjoy the features for yourself.