How many times has it happened to you – you have one or two weeks left of classes left until finals, and you haven’t even touched your notes once? This scenario happens all the time in college, but it doesn’t have to happen to you this year if you take the time to get a head start on finals early on. Here are a few steps you can take to prepare for finals early so that you’ll actually have time to enjoy your last few weeks of class instead of stressing about all the work you have to do.

Create a Better Study Environment

One of the best ways to stay focused is by creating a study environment that suits you. This can mean anything from having designated study space at home or around campus, establishing a study schedule and sticking to it, studying with friends instead of alone, having healthy snacks at the ready, and creating acronyms and mind maps that help you focus. 

Learn Important Skills Early

Study tips and techniques are both important. You’ll want to focus your studies so that you’re studying the most important information and making sure that your study habits are good. It’s also important to focus on the most important parts of the material when you study so that you can be confident in what you know going into finals. Lastly, make sure that your study sessions are focused and effective.

Set Goals for Yourself

To keep yourself motivated while you are studying, it is crucial that you set goals for yourself. These goals should be things that you know you can achieve and incentivize you to get your work done. For example, you can set a goal to study 20 hours in one week. After you achieve that goal you can reward yourself with a day off form studying.

Here are some more goal ideas that you can set for yourself: attend at least 3 review sessions with a study group, take an hour before bed each night to study, take notes in class, review notes from class and study class material at least once per day.

Setting goals for yourself will help you in the long run and will hopefully help you avoid pulling an all nighter once finals time rolls around.

Write Everything Down – Use Notes and Take Lecture Notes

A common misconception about studying for finals is that it doesn’t matter what you do before your final exam. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, early preparation can help make your semester more successful by making sure that you have time to study and prepare effectively before your big day.

The first step is to take notes from all of your lectures in your class, whether or not they pertain to the upcoming final exam. Even if the information isn’t directly related to what’s going to be on your test, it will help refresh your memory when you need it most. Next, come up with an effective study plan so that you know exactly how much time you’re spending studying each night. Finally, as we discussed earlier, write down everything so that when its time for a quiz or practice test at the end of the semester, everything will come back much more quickly and easily because of how well-organized everything is!

Use These Apps As Tools

1. StudyStack – this app has the ability to sync with other study apps, so you don’t have to worry about forgetting one of your flashcards.

2. FlashcardExchange – this app is great because it lets you create and share flashcards that others can use as well, which saves time.

3. Cram – this app helps you keep track of flashcards and has a database of over 195 million flashcards to study from!

4. Quizlet – Quizlet allows you to create flashcards and turn them into practice tests with multiple choice, true or false, and written questions.

For even more helpful flashcard apps, checkout our list of Top College Flashcard Apps in 2022 that will help you achieve your study goals.

Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute to Begin Studying

College students get a bad reputation for not studying enough, but with finals coming up and the end of the semester quickly approaching, it’s important that you don’t wait until the last minute to start preparing.

Even though it might feel like there is still a long way to go to finals, they will creep up on you faster than you think. If you start compiling all of your notes and information today, you can get a head start on studying. You can also be proactive and ask your instructors what material will be on the final exam. Either way, the earlier you start looking through your notes and begin studying the better off you will be.
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