With the semester well on its way, exams may start piling up. As an incoming freshman, realizing all the resources you have around you may be hard, but we have some advice for you. Even if you aren’t a freshman, this may help introduce you to new information you previously did not know.
1. S.I. Sessions
For starters, many freshman-level classes have S.I. (Supplemental Instruction) sessions you can attend. These sessions are taught by upperclassmen who review the material taught in class. This is an amazing resource to use if you feel uncomfortable with the material taught in class because it allows you more one-on-one interaction with the instructor to ask clarifying questions. Even if you haven’t attended a single S.I. session so far in the semester, it can still be extremely beneficial to attend some on the week of finals to help review all the information that will be on the exams.
2. Finding a Study Space
Finding a space where you enjoy and feel comfortable studying in is very important. Some places you may want to consider checking out are:
- Krach Leadership Center – There are many group study rooms in you want to get together with a study group, or individual tables to work at on your own. The hours go pretty late, so you can stay up studying for nights when your roommate wants to go to bed early.
- URSC – The URSC is located in the basement of Shreve. It is similar to Krach, where there are group study rooms as well as individual desks. However, just be prepared for more of a rush than Krach because it is all one one floor; Krach is spread out over multiple floors.
- Hicks Undergrad Library – Hicks is open 24/7 to Purdue University students. Its “main floor” contains a cafe area where there are a lot of booths and group table environments to work . When you enter the main Hicks floor, there is a variety of seating to chose from. The further back you go, the quieter it tends to be. There are many group study rooms located at the far wall of this floor. There is also a sub-basement which tends to be a lot quieter and contains many large classrooms if you are planning on working with larger study groups.
- HSSE – HSSE is another library located inside of Stewart Center. Its hours aren’t as long as Hicks but it tends to be a nice and quiet place to study if you prefer working during the day rather than later at night. The higher up you go in this library the quieter it gets. During exam season, however, it’s kind of hard to find a space so be sure to go in early and save a spot!
- Classrooms – You may have to check timings on specific buildings but a great place to study is random classrooms throughout campus. I have gone to Beering and Wetherill during finals last year and found an empty classroom and just studied there. It’s great because it tends to be very quiet, and you can use the boards to write down notes and review HW problems.
- Cafes – Finally, you can always go to different cafes around campus like Greyhouse, Vienna, and the Starbucks on Third Street. These are all great places to go if you tend to work better with noise and movement around you rather than complete silence.
3. Office Hours
Your professors and TAs are here to help you and want to watch you succeed so please go to them if you are really struggling to grasp the material during lecture. This is the perfect opportunity to get one on one help and ask those questions you were too scared to ask during lecture. You can also bring a friend with you if you feel intimidated to go alone.
4. Study Groups
Create study groups with people in your classes. Chances are, people are struggling with a course just as much as you are, and this gives you a chance to help each other learn. GroupMe is a great app to use while creating study plans and asking other people for homework questions. A great study tactic is teaching someone else the material; if you can successfully teach someone how to do something, it means you understand it. This could be an opportunity to teach others things you are comfortable with and learn from others as well.
5. Get Rest and Eat Healthy
I know, I know, you’ve probably heard it a thousand of times before, but it is very important to get some rest the night before an exam. I know it may seem that cramming for an exam the night before is the way to go, but you won’t be giving yourself time to let the material sink in. Instead, create a schedule a week or two in advance to cover all the material over the spam of time rather than all at once. This will give you more time to digest the information and to go to someone for help if you are having a hard time understanding a concept. Also, be sure you aren’t skipping meals; it’s important to be well rested and healthy before an exam, and you won’t perform well if you are sick.