6 Things to Remember When Cramming for Finals

December 11th, 2007 by Amelia

Worried About Finals This Year?

With some exams accounting for around 50 percent of your final grade, the pressure to make the grade may lower your level of performance. You don’t have to suffer this year. There are solutions.

We researched the fields of proper study habits, nutrition and health, and psychology to compile this list of the most important and often overlooked study tips. We present these to you in no particular order:

1.) Stay Away from Stimulant Drugs!

These include caffeine, ephedrine, cocaine, ect…

Many stimulants may be part of your everyday diet, and it’s ok to use your normal amount. The problem arises when you use stimulants to stay awake studying for long periods of time. You may have trouble digesting the information you need to absorb. The worst case scenario is that you stay up so long that you finally crash during the test and give a crappy performance.

If you generally rely on stimulants to stay awake or be more alert, try to change a few daily activities and get a natural boost. Exercise, stay away from saturated fats and sugar, and get a full night of rest each day.

2.) Carefully Choose Your Study “Setting”

Your setting will be the location of your cram sessions. Everyone has unique study preferences. Some prefer music while others enjoy total silence. Do you like to lie around, or is a large desk necessary? Take all of your considerations into account before going to your location. You don’t want to be stuck in an unaccommodating setting when your grades are on the line.

3.) Don’t Worry, Be Happy

Stop stressing. Think positive. Visualize taking the exam while confident and relaxed. KNOW that you have the mental ability to do well. All this is easy to say, but hard to do. If you have trouble, talk to a trusted friend for reassurance. Mothers tend to be pretty good giving you positive feedback when asked.

4.) Get Your Priorities in Order

You have a certain amount of time, and a big load to study.

Do you know what classes are most important? And what information in the class should be focused on? Make a list of your studying priorities and stick to it.

5.) Time for Time Management

You’ve got your list of priorities, but limited time. Create a schedule of where you will be located and what you’ll be studying. Be sure to work in some short breaks to stretch your muscles and stay alert.

Stick to the schedule. Make no sudden emotional changes to the schedule since this will likely cause a loss of valuable time.

6.) Don’t Study with Your Crush

I know studying for an important test is a great excuse to spend time with that person you find really attractive.

However, don’t use it when cramming, no matter what. I know it’s even harder if they ask YOU to study.

Just DON’T DO IT! You have enough distractions in your life right now as it is.

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23 Comments


    [...] For many of you, finals are right around the corner. If you’re starting to prepare, the College Scholarships blog has six considerations to account for when you’re getting your learn on. Avoid caffeine and other stimulant drugs, especially if you’ve exceeded the normal usage amounts as you wouldn’t want to crash during the exam and end up performing poorly. Choose your study area carefully: is a setting with music better or worse for you? Make sure your study setting accommodates your wants and needs. Don’t stress and be positive. Remember, your exams will all be over soon. Prioritize and put your most important classes first on your list. Manage your time efficiently. Study alone or with your classmates, but avoid hanging with your crush. It’s a distraction you’ll want to avoid. If you have additional study tips, feel free to share them in the comments. 6 Things to Remember when Cramming for Finals [College Scholarships] [...]

    By » Your Best Study Tips? [College] on December 16th, 2007


    I’m a CSC major, so I’m at my pc for alot of my study time. This is my downfall, having the web a click away kills me. So quick tip, Just unplug your Ethernet cable and you should be good to go. (I have two exams in the morning ahhhh)

    By Jon on December 16th, 2007


    I think location is the most important factor in effective studying. I try to find a place in the library with students in different grades than me so I feel no connection to them and am less likely to spark up a conversation. Also, I find that having different locations based on assignment works well too. I know it may seem contrived, but I find that doing creative writing assignments on a desk by a window or studying for a test in a chair by racks of library books really helps me focus on what’s at hand and keeps my mind in place. Also, only go to the library to cram. If you go to the library to work on something that isn’t urgent, you may lose the ability to concentrate the next time you have to urgently finish something.

    By Mike Brandman on December 16th, 2007


    last minute cramming is a waste – if you don’t know an hour before the exam, you won’t know at crunch time. Review the night before, get a good nights sleep, show up refreshed and you’ll do as well as you’re ever going to.

    Cornell note taking method – search google, implement it, you will improve your understanding of the material.

    Statistically, what you remember of what you hear is quite low, what you remember of what you read is not much better. What you remember from what you teach is very high. Study groups, or helping other people will solidify your understanding and noticably improve your ability to retain and access the information during an exam.

    Schedule early, schedule often. Conduct a threat assessment early in the semester for conflicting key dates – make sure you know well in advance when your finals are, when key deliverables (assignments/etc) are due and approximate how much time will be required to prepare for those events – look at surrounding events and be wary of conflicts. Steve’s going away party is in the middle of your review period? You better start review earlier so you can just tag a quick brush up after you recover from the party, etc.

    By scootah on December 16th, 2007


    [...] As finals are upon us, keep this things in mind! (CollegeScholarships.org) [...]

    By 6 Things to Remember When Cramming for Finals on December 17th, 2007


    Yes, scootah is right: the best way to know something is to teach it. I quiz myself about the material I’m working on and then relay it to another person or inanimate object, helps me nicely.

    By sodipodium on December 17th, 2007


    [...] For many of you, finals are right around the corner. If you’re starting to prepare, the College Scholarships blog has six considerations to account for when you’re getting your learn on. Avoid caffeine and other stimulant drugs, especially if you’ve exceeded the normal usage amounts as you wouldn’t want to crash during the exam and end up performing poorly. Choose your study area carefully: is a setting with music better or worse for you? Make sure your study setting accommodates your wants and needs. Don’t stress and be positive. Remember, your exams will all be over soon. Prioritize and put your most important classes first on your list. Manage your time efficiently. Study alone or with your classmates, but avoid hanging with your crush. It’s a distraction you’ll want to avoid. If you have additional study tips, feel free to share them in the comments. 6 Things to Remember when Cramming for Finals [College Scholarships] [...]

    By Your Best Study Tips? [College] teasered @ Feed UP !! on December 17th, 2007


    I also agree with scootah; whatever you can do to become active in the process is best. Just make sure to match the process with the kind of material you are studying: Have to take essay exams? Spend time mind-mapping the material or working with others to make a graphic of some sort that shows how ideas connect. Need to remember terms/definitions? Make a crossword puzzle (and have someone make one for you). Getting quizzed about a process? Write out a recipe card. Most importantly – though this won’t help you this semester – attend class and stay engaged during each session. “Forgetting” material sometimes just means loosing the trigger that brings the info from long-term info storage to short-term memory (e.g. awareness). Being in the place where you first came to understand the information may be all you need.

    By MBGITH on December 17th, 2007


    [...] 6 Things to Remember When Cramming for Finals – Some of the advice here might seem pretty obvious, but study skills are usually not the type of thing anyone is close to perfecting any time soon– so any advice is good advice. Take a peek at this list of 6 things that might help you or your students focus enough to ace those finals. From CollegeScholarships.org [...]

    By Instructify » Blog Archive » Monday by the Numbers on December 17th, 2007


    I find it useful to simply hand copy my notes or create an outline from the material I read. The act or typing it or writing it out helps me remember the information.

    By Hal on December 17th, 2007


    Stay offline if at all possible: Facebook is your enemy. If you cannot leave the laptop behind, at least turn off the wireless.

    By Woody on December 17th, 2007


    [...] College Scholarships Blog – 6 Things to Remember When Cramming for Finals [...]

    By EduLinks - Advice, Alcohol, Accounts « TheUniversityBlog on December 18th, 2007


    Wow I did the opposite of all of those during finals. Oops.

    By Mike on December 18th, 2007


    These tips are helpful, for sure. But a student must always bear in mind their responsibilities as a student. Cramming is really a not good feeling, so try not to experience it. I have to agree with scootah in saying last minute cramming is a waste – if you don’t know an hour before the exam, you won’t know at crunch time.

    By evslink on March 5th, 2008



    we better get on the tinatic because sinking is rising on saturday morning!,

    By Jacinth on November 27th, 2008


    [...] Things to Remember When Cramming for Finals. One I would add from personal experience is to NOT fall asleep during the [...]

    By mental_floss Blog » December 18, 2007 on June 21st, 2009


    i am so stressed out hope this really works cuz i could just break down any minute HELP!!!!!!!!!

    By stella on October 18th, 2009


    i prepare my own notes make i concise and study daily or can say read it ones daily so till the time my exam appears i feel confident to write my paper. reading ones daily for about 1 hr is more than enough to prepare for final exams. for formula and chemical reactions i draw it on papers and stick on wardrobe and doors so that whenever i am free i just glance it. This helps me a lot and hope so u guys too. good luck.

    By manasi on October 27th, 2009


    This sounds about correct i did cram studying last nite and did very well on my finals today!!!!!!!!!!!!

    By LeaninDB on December 16th, 2009


    sir/mam
    i want to get above 80percent in class 11th. but i have scored only 78 percent in class 10th. so please give me some tips so that i am able to get above 80 percent in 11th.

    By prakhar awasthi on June 15th, 2010


    but i can do onli wid cramming!i just cant remember things 4 2 long!so 43 me its bettter dat i cram-it helps me a lot
    i cram-produce it in d exam and forget abt it til d next test!but i score a grades always!

    By sree lekha on August 1st, 2010


    Studying with your crush in a public place can make you be inspired more… just don’t study with him or her in a private place.

    By College Grants for Mothers on September 13th, 2010


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