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Full steam ahead on the Exam Express!

By Tamar Ailenberg, 3rd-year Psychology/Biology SSP

This is exam season I challenge you to stay healthy, focused and on top of your game! Think that’s impossible? …Think again!

It may seem too early to start prepping for exams. However, there is one month until exams and preparing the slightest amount now can have enormous gains later on.

Here’s a look at how you can stay on-task this season when studying for exams while remaining healthy, social, and motivated.


START: With a Bird’s Eye View

Print out an April calendar and write in your exams. Include: the course name (or code), the time of your exam, as well as its location. This way, if you have two exams in one day you will be able to plan your day accordingly. You can also include how much your exam is worth if that will be of assistance

It will also be useful to have a calendar for March to track the ongoing projects and assignments your exam preparations do not interfere with your current workload.

NEXT: Weekly Schedule

Have a copy of your weekly timetable or fill out our weekly schedule template. Fill in your academic, extra-curricular, social and any other obligations you have for that week. Also fill in the amount of time you will need to prepare for them as well as how long they will take to execute.

In this process, don’t forget the most important obligation – YOU! Scheduling cooking time, mealtime, travel time, and exercise time are all great ways to ensure you stay healthy. Staying healthy will also ensure the BEST version of you is in that exam room on game day.

Once you have your current obligations filled in, map off time – even it’s just an hour or two every week to study for your examinations. It is a good idea to prioritize your exams – including how long it will take to study for it (are there many details and difficult concepts?), its weight on your final grade, and its importance to your degree plans.

Reviewing lecture notes, doing readings, and investigating unclear concepts are all great ways to get ahead.

LATER: Daily Schedule

Every night before you go to bed, it is advisable to make a to-do list for the next day. This ensures you do not forget and also allows you to rest easily and not worry about obligations. Things like: submit the geology assignment, talk to my English professor, or print out cover letter to bring to my interview at 2:30 are all great things to write down for your memory’s sake!

Also – check out the QLC Assignment Calculator for help with staying on top of assignments! We also have a breakdown of basic information on how to study for exams, as well as information on preparing for virtually all kinds of exams! Just do a control+F search with your keyword to find information on your query.


If you have any questions, please e-mail askapla@gmail.com or drop by Study Skills Coaching with the Peer Learning Assistants: Mondays from 6-8PM in Douglas Library, second floor, or Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 6-8pm in Stauffer Library Room 143.

Photo courtesy of Vitaly Volkov under Flickr Creative Commons Attribution License.