The Top Study Tips for Midterms

It’s almost midterm season, and you may be feeling a bit stressed. But don’t fret—you can still devise a study plan that maximizes your success. The top study tips for midterms include forming a study group, highlighting your notes, and refusing to cram before the big day (or days).

Looking for ways to ace your midterms? Continue reading to learn how you can best utilize your time leading up to midterms.

The top study tips for midterms—two weeks before

You know the date of your exam, and your professor has likely mentioned what content will be on the midterm. Great! Regardless of whether you take notes on a computer or with a pen and paper, now is the perfect time to start highlighting. By keeping track of important sections in each chapter or document, you’ll have easy access to information as you begin studying. Highlight definitions and important terms. When there are sections with difficult content or important topics, highlighting them will help you remember to revisit these concepts during your review periods.

Depending on how much content is covered on the exam, now might be a great time to create a study group with others in your class. Even if you miss a lecture, someone in your group will surely have the material covered. You can even ask members of your group to start a study guide or flashcards that each person can contribute to over time.

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The top study tips for midterms—the week of

By now, you’ve most likely covered a majority of the material that will be on the midterm. While you’re still a few days away from the actual exam, it’s time to start revisiting some of the more difficult topics. You should have highlighted sections of review materials, and you can use these to get started:

  • Reread any textbook chapters about this concept.

  • Review practice problems from your homework.

When you’re spending hours working on the same subject, make sure to take breaks and to refuel when necessary. It’s easy to lose focus and to stop processing study material, and a break can help you return to the material feeling refreshed.

Remember, it’s still not too late to start a study group. Invite others from your class to meet and to discuss any questions the group has. If everyone in your study group is having trouble with a certain concept, it’s time to visit your professor’s office hours. Any teaching assistants in the course could also be a useful resource.

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The top study tips for midterms—the day before

Don’t cram! Studies have shown that this is not an effective way to learn material. If you still feel uncertain about a large portion of the information that will be covered on your midterm, focus on developing an understanding of the main ideas. These will likely appear on the test with more frequency than specific details, and they may help you narrow down some options on multiple-choice questions. Review a few of the “big topics,” make sure you get some rest, and eat a healthy meal before your midterm. Good luck!

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