So for the lucky college students studying in the likes of DIT and DCU January can be a pretty stressful month. Not so long ago we gloated about having zero exams to worry about in the run up to Christmas, but now having only studied the TV guide and the inside of beer bottle we may start to feel somewhat sorry for ourselves......
Some tips to help you survive this examination period....
1. Get someone to hide your smartphone, gadgets away from your reach..
The number one distraction to anyone trying to study. Studying accounting ratios cannot be made memorable by snapchats from rentboybeef12 or not so encouraging messages from fellow students comparing how confident they are of repeating the exam in August, sure that's grand then....NO, its not. Lose the phone.
2. Set realistic study goals
Don`t let yourself get overwhelmed by the search for something that makes sense in the endless pile of notes. Every academic institution will try to preach the importance of study skills seminars and the need to plan your study day and allocate time for each topic, I am still yet to meet someone who is that organised. Set your alarm clock to a realistic time, 10am? Allow yourself an hour to have breakfast and to mentally come to terms with what lies ahead. If studying one particular subject study some notes but attempt to do an exam paper, you will learn a lot more by physically answering a past exam question. A pot of tea, plenty of breaks and a pile of leftover roses and some of your mammys christmas cake that nobody realistically nobody eats till February and you should survive. Do an exam paper....have lunch...... Study a topic and write out useful notes..... take a break.....study those notes.....have dinner..... You get the jist of it!
3. Do some sort of physical exercise......Anything!
Plan a morning run, walk your dog, go to football training....Hoover your room. Plan your day so that you have a time that you get up from your desk, if you studied in college, cycle or walk home. Do anything that allows you to let off some steam and catch some fresh air, its better for your brain that way.... You also wont feel like your bedroom or college libraries walls are closing in on you.
4. Something to look forward to
You need to have an upcoming event that excites you, something to remind you that your college days are actually great and its not all doom and gloom, who wants responsibility of a 9-5 desk job... Not just yet.
Planning a summer J1, inter-railing trip or other form of summer holiday is ideal. Planning the trip take away from the relentless college reading material. Gives you a sense of something to study for. Some people study for the chance to lose your dignity on Harcourt street, that's fine too
Everyone has heard the "fail to prepare, prepare to fail" quote, ye boring! I remember a teacher gave me a few useful pointers before the start of my hands biggest ever endurance test...aka the leaving cert. Get yourself up early, eat a half decent breakfast, coco pops are not proven to be good food for the brain. Have a short look over notes but give yourself an hour before the exam to chill out and relax. Last minute studying before an exam as we all know is more stressful then the female menstrual cycle, don't risk it.
REMEMBER... Your not missing anything. Apparently January is the national soup month, you,re ok.