Exams; a word that fills most students with anxiety and dread. Everyone deals with revision and studying with various techniques, but how do you know if you have the correct setup for optimum learning?
The Right Equipment For Studying.
Laptop Stand – Wherever you choose to study, a laptop stand can assist with that aching neck and improve posture. After a long period of studying, many students suffer from back and neck aches. Having your laptop at the ultimate eyeline can reduce this issue whilst providing more space at your desk.
Wireless Keyboard and Mouse – Having wires trailing everywhere can interrupt your studying space, knock your notes out of order and reduce your desk space. Opting for wireless accessories can free up your desk and limitations.
Correct Lighting – Having mood lighting is a great way to feel relaxed, but it is well known that spending several hours staring at notes or a screen can put a critical strain on the eyes. Ensure you have adequate lighting, such as a bright desk lamp, to ease those eyestrain headaches.
Back Support – Having good back support can aid with creating better posture whilst you cram for your exams. They can be reasonably affordable online, and you will be amazed at the difference.
Noise Cancelling Headphones – As students, you may be used to a busy household, with housemates coming and going all day. However, when it comes to concentration, it may become a distraction. With noise-cancelling headphones, you can block out the outside world and direct your attention to where it is needed while listening to some of your favourite study music.
Stationary – When it comes to stationery, everyone’s needs are different. For example, some students love flashcards, and others prefer digital notes. Whatever your stationery needs are, make sure you are fully stocked with everything you’ll require before you begin. It will save you from needing to nip to the shop mid-studying for an extra pack of pens.
Finding the Right Space
Creating or finding a suitable space can depend on each student’s situation. Suppose you have a shared space within your student accommodation. In that case, it may take some conversations with your housemates to find a time when it is free. Creating space in your own room could also be beneficial. Additionally, many areas across Lancaster can provide adequate opportunities to focus on studying.
Library – Lancaster library is in the city centre and has ample space for you to set up your optimum environment for studying. However, it is also open to the general public, so ensure you bring those noise-cancelling headphones mentioned above.
Cafés- If the comings and goings of others doesn’t deter you from concentrating, then Lancaster has plenty of cafes to sit down and get the job done. They may require the table during busy periods, but most places are usually fairly happy with it as long as you buy their products, as those with postgraduate accommodation in Lancaster may already know. It is always a courtesy to double-check with a business before settling down for an extended study stint.
Outdoors – Living in student accommodation in Lancaster means you are lucky enough to have the beautiful Williamson Park located relatively close. Find a quiet picnic bench or patch of grass and let nature help you focus. On the odd occasion that Lancaster gets suitable weather, spending some time in the open could help refresh your mind whilst enjoying the beautiful views.
Failure to Plan is Planning to Fail.
Having a study schedule can ensure that you equally fit in all the topics you need to cover. With the incredible resources available online, there will be a template to suit you and can help map out your week. There are printable versions and interactive versions that will do it automatically. Having a direct schedule to aim for will ensure you give yourself the proper time required to ace your exams.
Food for the Brain.
Whilst the correlation between food and studying seems peculiar, it has been scientifically proven that those who eat the right foods and a balanced diet have the most stamina for concentration and do better in exams. Ensuring you are feeding your body with the correct nutrients will help give you the concentration levels needed. Eating “junk” food may feel comforting and easy when you don’t have the time to cook, but processed sugars and fatty foods could fuel that feeling of fatigue. We are not advising that you say no to pizza, but instead of picking up the big bag of crisps, opt for healthier snack options such as a pack of grapes, prepared melon or dried fruit and nuts.
“To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.”Buddha
Whether you are a fan of exercise or not, keeping active is a great way to ensure optimal fitness for the body and the mind. Did you know the easiest yet still successful form of exercise is walking? Getting active doesn’t have to mean hard push-ups or crunches. Taking a walk around campus with your favourite podcast can do the job just as well. It only takes a 20 minute, fast-paced walk to get the heart pumping and moving. So instead of catching the bus to town, consider walking and getting that daily exercise.
Take a Break
To do your best, you need to be your best, so taking some time to relax is essential to preserving the best mindset to pass your exams. Whilst getting a schedule brimming with study sessions will help you get every morsel of information from page to mind, locking yourself away can be detrimental to your mental health. Taking time to meet a friend for coffee, visit the cinema or even pop on a film can help give your mind and eyes a rest, preventing burning yourself out.
Whilst we have suggested some great tips for studying, go easy on your well-being. Exams are there to test your knowledge, not expect you to know everything there is to know about the subject and whilst striving for a high grade is a fantastic achievement, a degree is a degree, whether you passed with flying colours or enough to skate through.