General suggestions

Good practices

  1. Inventory your remaining time, determine when your finals are, and what type of finals they will be (comprehensive or unit test?).
  2. Schedule several blocks of time (2 – 3 hours) for each class during those remaining days of final preparation. You may wish to begin by reviewing for the class that is scheduled as your last final.
  3. Begin your study session by reviewing your lecture notes. If you will have a comprehensive exam try to review a unit at a time. As you review your notes, try to verbalize a summary of the key ideas for each day's lecture. Ask yourself several (10 – 15) short answer questions over the lecture's content.
  4. Then review your textbook assignments by: a) looking at study guides provided by professors b) answering questions or problems at the end of the chapters. c) rereading the textbooks conclusion, introduction, italicized words, bold face headings, visual aids.
  5. Review your annotations.
  6. Ask yourself questions you think your professor would ask you.
  7. To synthesize information, try one of the following:
    • time-lines for history/humanities
    • concept cards for key vocabulary, concepts, individuals, events.
    • charts of philosophers or individuals with like or differing ideas.
  8. After two or more blocks of time where you have reviewed for a class, meet with a study partner or study group. This is especially effective if done the night before an exam. Each member has to bring 30-50 short answer questions over the lecture and assigned readings. Quiz each other and discuss key ideas of the course.
  9. Get a good night's rest. Get up early, eat breakfast, exercise, shower, and go to class. Remember, test anxiety is a result of poor planning and ineffective study strategies.

Provided by the Center for Advising and Career Development, Washington State University