Are you procrastinating? Watch this video for inspiration!

Exams are looming! Projects are impending! Are you struggling to get motivated? Watch this video created by students from Indiana University Bloomington for some inspiration and encouragement! (It’s only 3 minutes so the ASC gives you permission to pause your studies to watch it!)

Beat Procrastination! Eat that Frog!

ASC Count Down to Final Exams

Proven Methods for Improved Final Exam Preparation and Focus
Based on a 2013 article by Shaniese Alston, Office of New Media of the State University of New York

1. Say NO to cramming: Study in 20-50 minute increments and give yourself 5-10 minutes in between. By distributing learning over time versus cramming, you will typically gain more long-term retention of the material.

2. Say YES to cardio: Research shows that just 20 minutes of cardio can improve your memory. Whether you opt to dance, jog, walk, bike or swim, exercise will increase your energy level and reduce the effects of stress.

3. Eat superfoods/antioxidants: Everybody knows you should eat breakfast the day of a big test. Cameron Holloway, a senior clinical researcher at the University of Oxford suggests that high-carb, high-fiber, slow-digesting foods like oatmeal are best (oatmeal is more filling than cereal) and that eating a balanced diet that includes fruit and vegetables helps your brain hold steady.

4. Alternate study spots: Shake up your finals routine! Spending all night in the library can be draining. According to the New York Times, simply alternating the room where a person studies improves retention. Why? Supposedly, the brain makes subtle associations between what it is studying and the background sensations it has at the time. Try alternating your study spots between the library, a study room, and a quiet coffee house.

5. Time management: Cramming causes anxiety, which lowers your ability to retain information. By creating a balanced study plan and schedule, you will be able to study each subject in its entirety and ultimately boost your test performance.

6. Avoid the all-nighter: According to a 2008 study by Pamela Thacher, Associate Professor of Psychology at St. Lawrence University, all-nighters impair reasoning and memory for as long as four days resulting in lower grades. According to Dan Taylor, director of a sleep-and-health-research lab at the University of North Texas, you should review the toughest material immediately before going to bed the night prior to the test. It makes it easier to recall the material later.

7. MINIMIZE distractions: Research shows that while many students prefer to study while listening to music, texting friends, or watching television, they are less likely to retain information that way. If you must listen to music, stick to instrumental music and consider downloading these study tools to keep you focused!

8. MAXIMIZE practice-testing: You may have thought highlighting, re-reading and summation would be effective ways to study. Think again! A 2013 study, Improving Students’ Learning With Effective Learning Techniques, found that these techniques do not consistently boost students’ performance. Practice testing through the use of flashcards, or taking practice exams was observed to be a highly effective studying technique.

Use these study tips to create and implement your own survival plan for finals week this semester. Need help or encouragement? Stop by the Academic Success Center in VanZoeren 261 for you own personalized study session.

ASC Workshop: De-Cram for Exams!

The Academic Success Center is offering a workshop on De-Cramming for Exams! Please join us on Tuesday, April 2, from 5:30- 6:30 pm in Maas Conference.  We will have tips, tools and munchies that will help you coast confidently into the final weeks of the semester! Feel free to bring your dinner!

 

 

ASC Study Tip- LOTS of FREE Resources on campus!

Review & Reflect Regularly- What’s working? What’s not? Make a plan to adjust.

Don’t wait until you are doing poorly to seek out help- seek out resources before it’s too late to turn things around!

Many FREE resources are available to you:

Your professors and academic advisor

Your RA and/or RD

Academic Success Center

Tutoring Services

Group Study Sessions

Peer Academic Coaching and Study Strategy Assistance

Online Student Resources

Klooster Writing Center

Disability and Accessibility Resources

Counseling and Psychological Services

Boerigter Center for Calling and Career

5-STEP FINAL EXAM WEEK PREPARATION – Part II

1. Divide up your time.

• Spend Time Studying for the Exams that Carry the Most Weight.

• Focus Your Time on Difficult Classes – spend the majority of your time on the classes where your grade is borderline.

2. Stay alert.

• Get a good night’s SLEEP! Your brain can’t function properly without 7-8 hours sleep a night.

• Run stairs or do some jumping-jacks. Exercise gets blood flowing and increases your alertness.

• It has been proven that the smell of cinnamon and peppermint can help you stay alert. So chew on some gum if you’re feeling worn out.

3. Remember what you study.

• Recite, recite, recite! Recitation will burn facts into your mind. Recite the material out loud until you’re sure that you will be able to recall it.

4. Study selectively.

• Decide which information is most important and concentrate on it. Resist the temptation to try and learn all of the important-looking material.

• As you go through your notes and textbook find important definitions, concepts and equations. Write them down on 3” X 5” note cards. This will help you identify what you need to know, and you’ll have a handy set of flash cards. The process of rewriting may also help you memorize the content.

5. Eat a good breakfast.

• Eat a good breakfast the morning of the exam. Nutritious foods will keep your nerves steady and your brain engaged.

Need help/encouragement? Stop by the Academic Success Center in VanZoeren 261 for your personalized study session and a free deck of ASC Final Exam Study Strategies cards.

5-STEP FINAL EXAM WEEK PREPARATION – Part I

5-STEP FINAL EXAM WEEK PREPARATION – Part I

  1. Ask Questions!
  • Don’t be afraid to speak up in class. There’s a good chance that at least one other person doesn’t get it, either.
  • Use your prof’s office hours or schedule an appointment. Make a list of your questions and bring it with you. Record the answers on your list!
  1. Make a Study Guide
  • Put the information into your own words. This helps you retain it.
  • Create flashcards. Use the Quizlet app on your phone to create flashcards and quizzes.
  1. Arrange or Join a Study Group
  • It will help  you look at topics from different perspectives and you might even discover more effective study tips.
  1. Adjust Your Schedule
  • Form a study schedule, and stick to it. If your friend invites you on a Meijer run, remember to trade an equivalent amount of break time elsewhere in your schedule for study time.
  • You’ll be more productive if you include brief (10-15 minutes) study breaks every 1-2 hours. Do something entirely different during that time (e.g. going for a walk, run, or meeting a friend for a quick snack).
  1. Get Out of Your Dorm Room
  • The absolute worst place to study is on your bed. Even if you are at your desk, you can’t help but see your bed and be drawn in, or have a neighbor distract you.
  • Instead, take your headphones and study materials to the library or nearby café with free Wi-Fi and good coffee.
  • Don’t wait until the night before your exam to pack your brain with dates, statistics, and formulas. Pulling all-nighters can actually strain your brain.

Need help/encouragement? Stop by the Academic Success Center in VanZoeren 261 for your personalized study session and a free deck of ASC Final Exam Study Strategies cards.

ASC Study Tip- Persevere!

Persevere. College can present challenges but facing them will prepare you for challenges in your future career and life.

“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” -Thomas Edison

“Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible!’ ” -Audrey Hepburn

One Week Left to get an ASC Tutor!

The last date that the ASC will accept applications for a tutor is Monday, November 19. If you would like to be matched with a tutor (for most 100 & 200 level courses) please stop by the ASC (261 VanZoeren Hall) by 5:00pm Monday, November 19. A printable application and further information can be found on the ASC website.

ASC Study Tip (week of 10/22)

Keep your study area clear of items that could distract you. Have necessary materials close at hand. Concentrate! If you suddenly think of something else you need to do, jot it down to put it out of your mind and return to it later. Turn off notifications and anything else that might disturb you.

We suggest trying the Pomodoro Technique. Check out another video about this technique and how to stop procrastinating.

The 10 Best Pomodoro Apps!

Try a Pomodoro session with the College Geek.