Hope you all had an amazing Christmas and are enjoying the New Year. After having officially started in semester two, I feel it is only appropriate to talk about one thing – Exams.
There is never anything good that correlates to the word. It is usually associated with stress, studying and snacking. This year was no different – especially due to these exams being my first set of uni exams. There is nothing new or different about uni exams; you still go into a massive hall with people from your course (that you could have sworn this is the first time you have seen them), wait for the dreaded “you may begin” and eagerly anticipate the “that is the end of this exam”. In all honesty, the only different factor of uni exams is not having prelims to predict how you will do – whether this is a blessing or an affliction is up for debate. For me, studying was the worst part.
Although I’ve never found it extremely difficult to study, changing my lifestyle from seven months of barely looking at a book to intense revising was the biggest shock of all. I had to get back into the ‘swing of things’ and quickly. I tried flashcards for definitions and re-writing notes. These methods helped to a certain degree but not as much as I had hoped. I asked around my friends from uni to get advice on how they were studying but they were doing pretty much the same as me. The first exam was getting closer and closer so I turned to my last hope – the Internet and surprisingly this helped. In almost all of the posts I read, drink water and get a good night sleep came up. Like most people I just skimmed over it hoping for another unthinkable, amazing tip; needless to say this didn’t happen. So I tried the two most common tips. And I was delighted with how productive I was. I channelled my inner child and started using coloured pens and mind maps and before I knew it I had remembered more in two hours than I had for the entire previous week. I just wish I had found this out before my first exam.
Fast forward to a couple of weeks later and it was my first ever uni exam. I was, in every aspect of the word, nervous. I tried not to show it but I feel perhaps my shaking of the foot was giving it away. Despite this, I was weirdly eager to get into the exam and just get it finished. I entered the massive hall of RGU Sport, sat down and then in two very short hours, and with a cramping hand, I was done. I’m pretty sure I have never written so much and so fast in that space of time: ever. However I knew at the end of the exam I still had three more exams to go. Nevertheless, they were almost identical to the first one. They flew by and then I was done. That was it. I was, however, absolutely delighted when my last one had finished as I had a tub of celebratory ice cream waiting for me when I got home.
In hindsight, I wish I had made better use of the Study Skills sessions that were readily available for me. However, I am planning on doing so for future exams. Moreover, my lecturers were extremely helpful and always available to assist with any queries I had – they were just an email away.
In conclusion, exams will always be exams. You will stress, eat the entire contents of your cupboard, turn to social media for the never disappointing jokes that are so accurate, sit them, be delighted when they are over and anxiously wait for the results to come through. We now just have to do it all over again in May.
Thank you for reading,
P.S. I hope you all get the results you want.