The Best Exam Advice You’ll Ever Hear

The holidays are approaching. We’re all stuffing ourselves with turkey and pumpkin pie while making a plan to go Christmas shopping. However, in our Calvin Christian community, the holidays coming up also mean something else is approaching: exam week. 

Exams are stressful, but they happen every year, and we’re all still here somehow. Whether you’re a freshman who isn’t sure what’s coming, or you’re an upperclassman who’s looking for a new technique, here are my best study tips for exams:


  • Get Rid of Distractions Make a study space for yourself that is free of all distractions, and by distractions I mean your phone. Nothing good will happen if your phone is right next to you while studying. In order to study efficiently, you’ll want to concentrate, so do what it takes to create a distraction-free environment.
  • Chew Gum Chew gum while you’re studying! Then chew the same type of gum during your exam. Believe it or not, this has been shown to help you remember more of the material.
  • Create Study Guides It can be super overwhelming to study everything you’ve covered for the whole semester. I recommend making a study guide by making a list of different ways you can study. Write down each way you think you can study, whether that’s going over your notes or making flashcards. Then rank them in order of what you think would be most helpful. Finally, make your way down the list!
  • Take Breaks Your brain cannot concentrate for too long. Stay away from three hours of staring at your math textbook. Instead, study hard for around twenty minutes, then take a short break. After a few cycles of twenty minutes and a shorter break, take a little longer break! Make sure your brain has time to rest.

  • Practice Teaching the Material This, in my opinion, is one of the most helpful study tips I’ve ever heard. If you don’t know the material well enough to explain it, you probably don’t know it well enough. Try to explain and teach whatever you’re studying out loud to a wall, a sibling, or a friend. This way you can hammer in all the knowledge you need, and figure out what you yourself don’t understand.
  • Stay healthy! Late-night cram sessions may seem like a good idea in theory, but in reality, they aren’t a good idea at all. Make sure you are getting enough sleep during exam week. Eat well, exercise at least a little, and make sure you are staying healthy both physically and mentally.


While these tips are all helpful, just remember that at the end of the day, a bad exam grade won’t kill you. You are still valuable and important no matter what happens. Take some deep breaths, and just do your best. Good luck!

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