Midterms can be a stressful time for students.
It is the time when students start cramming and studying for hours on end to grasp every bit of information they can before taking a test.
Jacob Medina, 19, an undeclared major, begins studying for midterms about a week before the test in order to prevent the stress that comes with cramming the day before.
He bases the time he needs to prepare himself by how difficult the class has been.
“Specifically for the harder classes, probably a week in advance and I’ll study maybe three hours a day for a week,” said Medina.
Najati Burrow, 20, a civil engineering major, prepares himself three days before the exam by working on review problems and looking over notes.
In order to relieve some of the stress, Burrow listens to music and takes a break in between his studies to get a hint of fresh air before studying again.
“Usually music is a good help for the stress or going out and getting some fresh air every once in a while helps,” said Burrow.
Scenery can affect a student’s studying habits, and many students look for a peaceful environment to focus.
Like Burrow, Justine Martin, 19, a political science major, likes studying outside because of the relaxing surroundings.
He also listens to music while getting fresh air.
“Well I definitely listen to music, ice cream helps. I like being outside. I like being in nature, it helps me calm down,” said Martin.
Medina said he turns his phone off and looks for a quiet room where he can indulge himself in his studies without the constant reminders of the outside world.
Coping with the stress of finals can lead to days of no sleep and a diet consisting of the unhealthiest foods.
Jesenya Magana, 19, a business major, said she does her best to keep a healthy diet and workout plan which helps her deal with the stress and stay focused on her studies.
“You have to make sure you eat a balanced diet and eat nutritionally, stay healthy and stay hydrated. I work out when I can’t handle it,” said Magana.
Students use study guides and look over past tests and quizzes to prepare themselves for midterms, but they may not cover all materials that will be on a midterm.
Magana said she did all she could do to prepare for one of the midterms in her class, but it was harder than she had expected.
“I felt prepared for the test. Once I walked in and actually took the test, it was more than I expected,” Magana said. “I felt very overwhelmed when taking it and I feel like I didn’t do as well as I had hoped.”
Students also face the issue of balancing multiple midterms in one week, sometimes even the same day.
Martin faced three midterms in one week, so she had to decide which one to focus heavily on.
This is a problem for students because they face the fear of not doing as well on a midterm because they have to focus on another.
People tend to study in the order that they were taught the information by reviewing their notes in chronological order.
However, reviewing information out of order can help trigger information during a test.
Tests are not designed in chronological order to the teacher’s studies and so a student must be able to recall information in a randomized manner.
Especially difficult information should be reviewed before going to bed since the brain is able to consolidate the recent information and make it easier to remember the next day.
Apart from finals week, midterms can be the most difficult time for a student.
The key to succeeding is remaining relaxed and stress-free in order to pass the exams to come.