Sunday, December 7, 2014

Whole New (Get Ready for Finals Week!) View

View of the Davis Library around 1 PM Friday 12.5.14

It’s getting to be crunch time as classes have ended and finals week begins soon at the University of Rio Grande/Rio Grande Community College.  

To reduce stress levels and take the edge off, Davis Library is taking this moment to share a few brief study tips to help get students through their exams:

  • Get Organized!  Put together a study timetable based around your exam dates and times. Prioritize your studying by dealing with the material you’ll be tested over. Break down your class information into major topics or chapters and begin by going over the oldest and most important stuff first. Identify what you need to learn by outlining your notes or texts. Predicting what types questions may be asked on your reading assignment or lecture notes can also be helpful. Then, if your instructor provided a study guide, take time to rewrite or recite the material it includes. Put yourself in the right mindset to approach your test by setting aside time to review just before your exam. Now, don’t forget to leave plenty room on your study timetable for some flexibility. Job and family responsibilities, meals, sleeping, exercise and breaks are important year-round considerations that shouldn’t be neglected during finals week.   

  • Get Active!  Regular exercise and taking time out for play is also important. No matter what your age, “recess” reduces tension and improves your ability to process the information you encounter. Being physically active not only benefits your body, but your brain as well.  For example, research has shown aerobic workouts can enhance people’s abilities to focus and recall.   Being socially active has its benefits too!  It offers you a support system while developing your collaborative and problem-solving skills. Remember the value of keeping a schedule (See Get Organized! above.) Sometimes we get into the habit of using breaks and social times as ways to procrastinate or escape from those things we find difficult or challenging.  Finally, avoid heavy doses of late night exercise as it could disrupt your rest, which is very important to your mental faculties and overall health.

  • Get Sleep! Pulling an all-nighter” is not effective or healthy. Committing information to your long-term memory takes time.  You would be better off making time for shorter (20-30 minute) study and review sessions throughout the day or week.  Getting a full night’s rest (at least 7-8 hours a night) will help you to think more clearly and creatively. Sleep deprivation promotes a great many health risks. Our bodies—particularly our immune systems—depend on the downtime to repair and refresh, so they are able to function properly.

  • Get Help! If the material you are studying does not quite make sense to you, then don’t be afraid to ask for help. Your instructor’s office hours or contact information are offered for that reason.  Your instructors probably will not review that entire lecture you missed when you decided to skip class, but they will generally answer specific questions about reading assignments or course topics.  Your classmates may also prove helpful. Consider studying together as a group in order to share different perspectives on course material.  This practice can improve your understanding of its content. Finally, finding someone to talk-out what you’ve learned, or having them drill you by asking you to explain key terms or concepts from your course material, can also deepen your understanding and ability to recall information on a test.

 Have a great finals week... good luck on those exams!

Rio Grande Student Krystal Morgan Gets Ready for Finals Week @ Davis Library
Davis Library is open its regular hours throughout finals week and offers plenty of spaces for group or quiet study.  If you have any questions, please feel free to “Ask Us!

1 comment:

  1. Actually, Davis Library will CLOSE at 5 PM on Thusday, December 11, 2014 as that is the last day of finals week. So, Davis Library's hours for finals week are as follows:

    Mon., Dec. 8 - Wed., Dec. 10 > 8 AM - 10 PM
    Thurs., Dec. 11 & Fri. Dec. 12 > 8 AM - 5 PM
    Sat. Dec. 13 & Sun. Dec. 14 > CLOSED

    December/January holiday break hours:

    Mon., Dec. 15 > CLOSED (Staff Development)
    Tues., Dec. 16 - Fri., Dec. 19 > 8 AM - 5 PM
    Sat., Dec. 20 - Sun, Jan. 4 > CLOSED
    Mon, Jan. 5 - Fri. Jan. 9 > 8 AM - 5 PM
    Sat., Jan. 10 > CLOSED

    Regular hours resume: Sun, Jan. 11 (Open 5 -9 PM that evening)