Taking midterms from home, a blessing in disguise or a disaster |Photo By Flickr
By Jessica Defreitas
Now that we have reached our eighth month of adjusting to a new lifestyle due to COVID-19, many students are trying new ways of studying. Students like Nicole Clark who says she had to find the time and money to set up a small study space in her basement. She said , “I wasn’t sure how I would manage but I bought a cheap desk at Ikea and I try my best to study when my family is asleep because everyone is always home now.”
Being away from campus may be a blessing to some but unpleasant to others. While some students may have the comfort of a quiet home or easy access to cafes/study areas, there are others who live in cramped housing, noisy neighborhoods or just lack the basic necessity of a place to sit and do work. Time has also become a different entity when everyday either feels exactly the same or completely different, depending on your circumstances. Despite everyone’s situation or resources, each of us wants to succeed.
Midterms are not like we are used to this semester. Everything will be conducted online, and either be submitted on blackboard or sent to your professor through email. This method allows students a little more time to submit work and takes the pressure off being in a classroom. Sometimes we allow nerves to get the best of us when in a public setting like a classroom which in the end can sometimes affect our grade negatively. Students who face social anxiety may end up with better grades while others who fare well with face to face learning will accrue ruinous effects.
A few ways in which we can prepare for exams this semester is by preparing written schedules. You may be thinking , “Why can’t I just note it in my phone?” Well, studies have shown that people who write down their goals are more likely to get them done than those who do not. According to Forbes, we can improve our encoding processes by writing , which means, when you write things down you have a better chance at remembering it. Now that we are going back to many older/traditional ways of functioning, pen and paper may be your new best friend for ensuring you never miss a deadline.
Sticking with pen and paper, sticky notes are also another old fashioned way that will function as a way of setting reminders. Pasting sticky notes on your fridge, mirror, desk, or any surface that you constantly look at everyday will serve as an automatic prompt or nudge to your brain. Any type of visual cue will come in handy during this time.
Getting in touch with professors is another way in which we can stay up to date with exams and assignments. Now that we cannot meet during office hours on campus, professors provide virtual office hours where you can meet with them over Zoom or Collaborate Ultra to address any concerns you may have. Some professors even provide their cell phone number so that students can call them just in case you cannot reach their office hour meeting.
Being away from a classroom can be a struggle. Those of us who enjoy the company of a study group or just the general atmosphere of a library will have to find new ways to prepare for exams. Depending on your area code, you may be able to reach a nearby coffee shop so that you can be in that similar atmosphere where people are around. Another option are
study rooms, these are available to book if you can afford to rent a space for your study/work time. Because of COVID-19, people with extra space or larger homes are renting rooms or office spaces to students who can afford to go that extra mile. With a few days left of somewhat mild temperature, you can also venture to a park, after all, fresh air is proven to raise serotonin levels naturally according to “Premierhealth.com”.
With this new way of life, the key element is to try your best. We may crash and burn from exhaustion, but no one ever said college would be a walk in the park, no pun intended. Many of us are parents, youngsters living with many siblings or live alone and feel the sorrow of being lonely. Whatever your case may be, we all want good grades to get us to our dream job or specific goal in life and we all must work hard to get there. If you feel like you are not doing enough or that you may not get the grades you want, think of this quote from Robert Kiyosaki , “You get rich because you do the things most people will not do, success requires sacrifice, you must be willing to make those sacrifices.”