December is an exciting month as the holiday season draws near, but there is one thing students dread most: final exams.  While these next few weeks may include large consumption of caffeine, too little sleep, and several stress headaches, they may become easier with these 10 things you need to do to ace your finals.

1) Divide studying into small chunks

When you are looking at everything you need to complete within the next few weeks, it can get extremely overwhelming. Divide your studying into small chunks each day so your mind can focus on one thing at a time. You will spend less time stressing and more time focusing on getting the small milestones completed.

2) Get sleep

Get sleep, no matter how much you think you “don’t need it.” Getting eight hours of sleep per night is ideal, but take what you can get during finals. Stay away from all-nighters; these will only cloud your thoughts and slow you down all-together. Try getting your tasks completed during the day and calling it quits when you begin feeling exhausted.

3) Organize study groups

Studying alone can become boring and tedious. By arranging study groups, you will become more energized and will be introduced to your group’s ideas that you may not have thought of. While group studies can be fun, make sure to stay on topic and get work done.

4) Turn off your phone and put it away

You will become much more productive when you are not checking your phone every few minutes. Text messages and social media can wait. Reward yourself every so often with social media, but try to keep your phone on airplane mode for as long as possible.

5) Create practice exams and study old course work

By writing and answering your own practice exam questions, you will be less nervous while taking the actual final exam. Studying old course work will also help refresh your memory allow you to get a feel for what kind of questions your professor may ask on the final exam.

6) Use flashcards

Flashcards are underrated. Whether you use physical flashcards or a website such as Quizlet, making and using flashcards will help improve your memory for answering questions and remembering terms. Instead of simply looking at material, they will truly test your knowledge.

7) Visit your professor’s office hours

Before your exam, visit your professor to ask for any last minute tips. Come prepared with specific questions and express any concerns you may have as well. Your professor will appreciate you going the extra mile, but still be respectful of their time. Ask for advice, not answers.

8) Take designated breaks

Being cooped up in one place for a long period of time may cause you to become anxious and exhausted. Every thirty minutes or hour, take a walk around and let your mind take a breather.

9) Find your study nook

Think about your study preferences and find the perfect place for you. Do you like silence or background noise? Do you prefer studying alone or in a crowded room? Answer these questions and find the best study environment for you whether this is a library, coffee shop, or at your own home.

10) Breathe

Stress will not be beneficial to you in any way. Instead of becoming worried about finals, breathe and follow these tips. You will get much more done when you are focused on acing your exams versus overwhelming yourself.

As you are in the final homestretch, remind yourself that working as hard as possible during finals will pay off when you receive your final grades. Be your own motivator and finish strong.

Jennifer D.
Jennifer Duplessie is a senior at Texas A&M University pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a career in political communications incorporating her passion for writing and photography.

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