Studying Before Your Midterm

By Maria Martinez
Blog Content Contributor

I went through midterms this week and I am currently dying. I have slept only for about 12 hours the whole week, and people can notice because I can’t hide the black circles under my eyes. I just want to go to bed for a whole week and binge watch my favorite show.

I am the only one to blame for being a walking zombie right now. I plead guilty (I took a Media Law test, so I am using what I learned). I should have started studying way earlier than the day before the test. I am sure I am not the only one who leaves their studying until the last minute. We think we will be able to knock a test just by studying a day or night before, but it doesn’t work like that. That is why I believe we should start studying one week before the big day.

If you have questions, you will have time to ask your professor. If you start going over the review and topics the day before the test, most likely, your professor will not answer your emails in which you’re freaking out. You had enough time to study, so the day before the test is not the time to ask questions. However, if you start reviewing before, you can visit him or her during office hours so they can further explain whatever you are having trouble with. Professors are not monsters, don’t be afraid to talk to them. They are here to help us.

Get organized, write everything you have to do so you don’t forget it. Photo by Maria Martinez.
Get organized, write everything you have to do so you don’t forget it. Photo by Maria Martinez.

It is impossible to learn every single detail you should’ve learned in eight weeks on a single night. For example, as I said before, I took a Media Law midterm and also a Fashion History one this week. Both classes had very specific terms and details I needed to know, and it was hard to remember every single one of them. If I had started studying sooner, I could have learned everything in parts and it would have been way easier. You can divide your days and studying however you want. You can set specific days for a subject or you can combine a little bit of each class in a day.

You’ll be able to get more sleep the day before the test, as well. Pulling all-nighters is a common phrase heard between midterms and finals. We stay up all night studying, and we get to the test half awake. The lack of sleep may be doing your GPA more harm than good. The National Institutes of Health found sleep deprived students have lower GPA’s due to the fact that it impacts memory and concentration. Dr. Philip Alapat, medical director at Harris Health Sleep Disorders Center recommends getting 8-9 hours of sleep nightly, especially before exams. He also advises to study around 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., since it is the period of optimal brain function.

I am sure if we do these things, we will do better in our test. Plus, we are going to fully and truly understand the material we are covering in the class. Otherwise, we are just memorizing it for the day and we will forget it as soon as the semester ends. The point of coming to school is to learn, so we should take advantage of our professor’s knowledge. We all have very busy schedules, but in the long run, dedicating more of our time studying outside of class will be beneficial for us.

Featured image by Kimberly Garcia.

Holly Henrichsen

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