Exam time often leads students to nibble their fingernails down to the quick due to nerves. And that’s why we’ve put together this list of helpful tips for reducing stress and maintaining sanity during exam time:
1. Don’t leave study until the last minute. Plan ahead. Letting it all pile up is the quickest way to a nervous breakdown. (Just kidding. But it’ll almost certainly stress you out.)
2. Organise study groups with friends. Studying doesn’t have to be a boring chore – it can be fun if you get organised. We’re talking chips and lollies over textbooks. (Or slightly more brain-friendly snacks like fruit, nuts and natural yogurt.)
3. Follow your own schedule. Everyone’s brains are wired differently. Studying for twelve hours straight might guarantee one person top marks, while it might guarantee someone else nothing but a mind-numbing headache. Figure out what works for you, and create a routine.
4. Choose a bright study space. It’s often easier to be productive at a clean, spacious desk with natural light than in a squashed, cluttered corner of a dark room. Even if you don’t have an appropriate space at home, there are plenty of free libraries around big cities like Sydney and Melbourne, many of which have cafés right outside. Grab yourself a hot chocolate and get going.
5. Plan the actual day. Figure out what you’ll wear, what you need to bring, and where the exam is being held. Don’t leave these things until two hours before the exam starts, otherwise you’ll end up screaming at Google Maps while running down the street in a bath towel. (We may or may not be speaking from experience.)
6. Turn up! Yes, exams have this scary vibe to them, but even if you feel unprepared or nervous, turning up is better than skipping the exam and setting yourself up for a guaranteed fail. Don’t throw away the whole trimester’s time spent in class by chickening out. Even if you feel unprepared, it’s still turning up and giving it a red hot go that counts. Who knows, you may have learnt more than you thought. And let’s face it, some marks are better than none. So be brave, breathe, and turn up. WE BELIEVE IN YOU!
Bonus Tip: Drink lots of Water! Exams are stressful so you need to stay hydrated and healthy throughout. Always take a water bottle in with you!
Good luck everyone. Just relax and do your best (easier said than done, we know). But at the end of the day, exams are not the be all and end all. So if you don’t hit it out of the park, don’t beat yourself up. There are always other options.
And if you ever feel like a confidential chat with one of our friendly Student Wellbeing Officers, simply contact our Student Wellbeing Team.