The 4 Stages of Last-Minute Exam Prep

The exam timetables are out, and we’ve started planning how we are going to study effectively and smash the exams.

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But unfortunately, this is not reality… instead we will continue to not catch up on our readings, fail to update our study notes, and our well thought out plans will not be of any use.

These are the stages that we all go through leading up to STUVAC and final exam weeks:

STAGE ONE: ATTEMPTING TO CATCH UP

First, we tell ourselves we need to catch up on all of the readings we have missed. Easy.

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Yeah, no. After realising we are drowning in endless pages, we complete a cost-benefit analysis and decide that knowing all 13 IBP readings back to front aren’t worth the marks in the exam.

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STAGE TWO: MEMORISE MEMORISE MEMORISE

Next, we embark into stage 2 which means we begin to write all of our study notes that we told ourselves would be kept up to date throughout the semester, but Netflix got the better of us.

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In reality, we will simply write summaries and read over lecture PowerPoints hoping to develop a photographic memory like Mike Ross.

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STAGE THREE: STUVAC PROCRASTINATION

Now we enter stage 3…you already know what’s coming. Stuvac rolls around and we make well thought out plans. These pretty plans involve going to the gym, studying for 5 hours a day and having rejuvenating breaks.

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Plan: Wake up at 9:00am on Monday and study for 3 hours. Easy peasy, alarm is set we are good to roll (out of bed…but not at 9:00am).

The alarm goes off at 9:00am but we just need 10 more minutes to fully wake up…

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It’s now 2:00pm. But hey! It’s okay because we still have the rest of the week! We can just take today off and work really hard for the next few days…

Well… its Friday. Let’s take a look at our plan and see what we have achieved.

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Woah…there are a lot of uncomplete tasks.

STAGE FOUR: THE NIGHT BEFORE

Time for the final stage of our final exam preparation journey. Stage 4 involves our night before exam routine and morning of rituals. The night before, we tell ourselves to get at least 8 hours sleep and wake up refreshed and ready to smash it.

But in reality…

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Our morning of ritual consists of 2 things. That’s right, only 2. First, we need coffee.

Lots of coffee.

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Now as we head to uni we rapidly read our ‘notes’ hoping to remember it all but because our minds are telling us how easy it would have been if we had stuck to our plans and continually updated our notes throughout the semester, we don’t really take any of it in.

And as the exam period finishes, we begin the cycle again.

Written by Laura Hiatt

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