The stress of college can all too easily lead to burnout. Here are a few tips to help you make it to the end of the semester with your sanity and energy levels intact.
1) Plan Yourself Well- Failing to plan is planning to fail. Those words were drilled into my high school senior year Accounting class. Those words can also be my life motto. It’s difficult but always ensure that you have enough time to get an assignment done (possibly even extra time in case of any unexpected circumstances).
2) Have fun- I’ve been known to literally just sit around and read for hours or have a TV show marathon when I should be studying. Downtime is very very important to ensure you don’t overstress yourself. Take breaks and take them often.
3) Work smart not hard- Okay so this is going to make me sound so bad but I always work harder for the first assignment of each module. The reasoning behind this is that if I get a good enough mark for the first assignment, I don’t need to worry as much for the second one. If you kick ass at both assignments then you’re pretty much guaranteed a pass for the semester (depending on how your final mark is compiled).
4) Don’t compromise on your sleep- Sleep has health benefits and blah blah blah. Don’t give up on your sleep even if it’s for an all-nighter. Your body needs rest to recover from the day and prepare for the next one.
How do you avoid burnout in college?
It’s that time of the year again. Finals are upon us even though it feels like we JUST finished writing our last paper. Here are my tips to help you prepare for finals:
1) Tailor your studying for the type of exam- I used to study for all my papers in the same way. Read the notes, read the textbook and hope for the best for exams. Don’t do that. It’s far more effective if you study depending on what the exam question is. Draft out essays or outlines of essays for an essay question. Test yourself for multiple-choice questions and practice answering “long questions” to the best of your ability.
2) Use Past Papers- Speak to your lecturer or tutor about papers that have been used previously. I overheard a conversation about our university papers being in the library- something I hadn’t known before.
3) Keep Calm- okay I’m not the best student out there but I’m pretty proud of my marks. I’m also pretty proud that I never crack under pressure. No matter how stressful exams are, be certain to always remain calm. Freaking out will only stress you out and cause you to forget what you’ve learnt.
4) Use more than one medium of learning- Learning the same thing over and over again is boring. Switch it up by changing the way you study. I usually write notes down but when I get bored I move on to typing them in my own words on my phone. I’ve also been known to sing but only when numbers are involved.
5) Ask for help when you need it- Whether you need extra revision with a tutor or you need to step away from some of your responsibilities, ask for help if you’re feeling overwhelmed.
What are your tips for finals?
I don’t know about you but each time I’m excited for a semester, there’s always that one class that ruins everything. Last year it was Translation and this year it’s Research Methodology: Criminology.
What makes this module so intimidating is that it involves graphs and statistics (stuff I suck at). Granted the majority of my fear stems from the fact that I don’t know what to expect but the entire course is terrifying. Here’s how to deal with a difficult class.
1) Speak to your lecturer- most of my fear comes from not knowing what is expected or from not knowing if I’m able to cope with the workload. Speak to your lecturer one-to-one and explain your concerns. Sitting down and talking through the module can help you decide if you really can or can’t manage with it.
2) Meet with your lecturer regularly- if the module is compulsory it helps if you meet with your lecturer to go over concepts you find difficult. When my Translation lecturer found out I was anxious about her class she made certain to check with me often to see if I was coping (I was fine but her thoughtfulness was much appreciated anyway).
3) Work on your own- Do the readings or work out the problems before the class. This way you’re exposing yourself to the work an extra time and you can ask for clarification while in class. My Translation seminars and lectures were less terrifying when I engaged with the material beforehand.
4) Look for extra help- when I first started at campus I had no idea how to write an essay. I did a module that taught students how academic reading and writing worked but I failed at my first essay. Thankfully there were people in campus who specifically helped students with essay writing. Look for opportunities such as these where you’re able to get the additional help you need. It’s a tiresome effort but so worth it.
What are your tips for dealing with a difficult class?