How to… Stay Motivated for Finals

By Lexi Reeve

Campus here at the University of Oregon has a gloomy feel about it lately, and that means that dead week has hit and finals are soon to follow. It’s easy to tell from the zombie-like appearance of fellow students that classes are winding down, stress is increasing, and studying has hit an all time high for the term. Not to mention that Oregon decided to throw in some frosty, cold weather into the mix to challenge us not to get out of bed in the morning! Well, when you feel like your brain just can’t take in any more information and you want to give up on studying, just read the tips below to gain some much needed motivation before finals!

1. Set Goals

Write out a list of what you need to get done over the weekend. Then write out how long you think it will take you to do each task, and assign a time  (such as Saturday, 10-11:30 am) for you to finish the task. If you plan out when you will do each assignment or read each chapter, it won’t seem so overwhelming.

2. Plan Your Time Wisely

I know that I’ve been guilty of this in the past, but I try to get everything done at once without thinking about the degree of importance each task requires. So if you have a final Monday and one on Wednesday, for example, don’t study for both of them over the weekend. The first final is the most important one for you to focus on at the moment, so study for that first, and once you’re completely finished, move on to the next task. If you plan your time wisely, you’ll get the biggest reward for as little effort as possible.

3. Eliminate Distractions

If you have a difficult time studying at home (due to distractions from roommates, social media sites, or the television) go somewhere to study like the library or the EMU student union. If you have a hard time focusing while surrounded by other people, who are most likely in study groups talking to one another, try to study at home but remove the potential distractions so that you can focus. Tools like LeechBlock exist so you can temporarily lock yourself out of sites like Facebook and Twitter, which may be causing you to waste time. Just specify the sites you want to block and the time you want them to be disabled.

4. Study with Friends

If you have class with friends, studying in a group will usually help you to learn more than working on your own. We all have different learning styles, so while you may be a visual learner, your friend might be an auditory learner. You each may have picked up on different aspects of the lectures and/or readings. So studying together will help you learn more than simply working on your own. The difficult part will be trying not to get sidetracked while studying with friends!

5. Take Breaks

It’s important for you to be able to breathe and take some time for yourself, too! Don’t let studying consume you for the next two weeks. You need time to relax and let the studying sink in instead of overwhelming yourself with information (and remembering only a portion of it). Have some fun with your friends before you leave for winter break. If you have something to look forward to, you’ll be more motivated to study and be efficient while doing it.

Good luck on finals everyone, and have a great winter break!

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