If it’s one time you really need to stay focused during the quarter, it’s during finals week. Yet, I’ve noticed the difficulty many of us have studying for our finals and completing final assignments during this one week. Here are some tips I’ve picked up to help us prepare for our exams:
- Take care of your other obligations before finals week. This is especially important for those of us involved in extracurriculars. Complete all your tasks and duties before 10th or finals week so you can focus on your studies.
- Learn to say no. I’ve seen many people struggle with this part as they try to balance favors for friends, extracurriculars and other obligations. Remember, that you are here for your studies first and foremost. Be smart and get your expensive tuition’s worth of education. Don’t waste your parents’ money or your financial aid by failing to prioritize your academics first. That said, make sure you try to fulfill all other obligations ahead of time to prevent them from clashing with midterms and finals.
- Create a daily schedule on how you will divide your studies and breaks. Be sure to include breaks throughout the day so you do not burn out. The earlier you begin scheduling in your studies (i.e. from the start of 10th week), the more productive you’ll be. I’ve never pulled an all-nighter in my life and by creating an effective schedule, I’ve been able to enter my exams with peace, excitement and confidence, Alhamdullillah.
- Tell your peers to study and stay focused. This is especially important if you study with friends. It’s a lot more difficult to study when others around you are not so remind them to also hit the books with you.
- Remember to ask Allah (swt) for help. Right before you begin studying, take a few moments to thank Allah (swt) for allowing you to attend this university and ask Him to help you understand your studies better and to help you attain beneficial knowledge. Basically, it’s about changing your intentions from getting the answers on the exam to getting valuable (and applicable) knowledge you will remember even after the finals.
On exam day:
- Get a good night’s sleep. You want your mind to be in its sharpest state while taking an exam so try to get a good night’s sleep the night before, preferably 5-6 hours minimum.
- Eat a healthy meal.
- Say Bismillah. If you were able to review all your necessary materials and attend your classes, then you should be in good shape. Before your exam, ask Allah (swt) to help you remember what you studied and to make it easy for you to articulate the answers.
Photo taken by Salma Abulebda.