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How to Study for Finals


Hannah Margaret is a Zooey Deschanel look-alike, college student, our guest writer on high school tips, and blogger at hm who looks at something we are all dreading this time of year: finals! Once you've mastered the stress-busting techniques, master how to study for finals from the test-taking master: Hannah Margaret. ~~ As a college senior, I have had my fair share of finals. I’m here to share my tips on how to study for finals, but you must realize that there is no one way to tackle the beast before break. They are a rare breed, finals. They come in all different shapes and sizes, and to top it off, we all learn and study differently. So this is what I have to offer on the subject.

studying in high school

1. Organization is key. When I was in high school, I would get a binder strictly for exam materials. That way, I could keep everything I needed to study in one place. I would put dividers in the binder to separate subjects, and I would make killer study guides (see #4). Sidenote: I stopped doing this because I hated disorganizing my other binders. Furthermore, color-coding is fantastic especially if you are a visual learner. I would highlight key terms in one color, and then, I would highlight the facts or terms I had a hard time remembering in another. Some people would give dates, names and terms all different colors. I wasn’t so much into that. But, like I said, there are a gagillion ways to conquer the final exam—you just have to find what works for you.

2. Make a study schedule. This is the only way I guarantee that I deal with each subject sufficiently. Some of my teachers would also include how many hours approximately it would take to succeed on the final—I recommend following their lead. If they don’t tell you, block out chunks of time each day for each subject. Keeping it interesting by switching it up is important to me because it prevents boredom. Also, studying many days in advance is proven to make the information stick better than a night-before-cram-session.

3. Ask your teacher what it takes to succeed on that final & do it. They wrote the final; hence, they know what it takes to ace it. If you are hyper grade conscience like me I figure out what I have to make on the final to get the grade I want in the class. Do that. It helps if you are stressed but you don’t need to be, or if you are needing some motivation.

4. Study groups & study guides. Condense the material into a typed study guide where you can flip through it with ease (and highlight, if that’s your jam). This goes back to the organization pointer. And don’t don’t don’t forget the study groups. Chatting about the subject matter is so helpful especially when handling English, History and Science. You have to really understand to explain the subject to your peers, and if you don’t know a concept, chances are, someone will know in the group. I find that just a discussion of the material extremely helpful.

Okay dears, now it’s time to go to bed early, eat properly and put on that game face. I always remind myself that it’s just about a week of hard work. After that though you can have fun and be lazy and watch Christmas movies and make cookies (I could go on) over break. I know I am just fighting through exams in order to “earn” my Christmas break. Thinking about it like that really helps me get through it all. Don’t be overwhelmed, but also put forth some effort. Good luck!

~By Hannah Margaret Allen. For a fantastically great posts and a well-traveled blog adventure, check out HannahMargaretAllen.blogspot.com