By Caroline Favret, ’18

The only thing between you and a two-week long winter break: midterms.  These tests account for 20% of your grade, and often cover a whole semester’s worth of material.  While midterms can be incredibly stressful, there are easy ways to reduce the work ahead of you.

Tip 1: Midterms come inevitably

Unlike a normal unit test, you can’t simply reprieve a midterm.  But, by studying early there’s no reason you should feel unprepared.   Even 5 minutes a day can help solidify information in your mind.  Review what your teacher said in class the day of, then the next day, and by the end of the week you’ll be surprised how much you actually understand.  If you have avoided the work until the day before, you’ll most likely feel ill-prepared on the test day.

Tip 2: Beat procrastination

To ensure you’ll actually study the hours you said you would, make commitments.  Vary up your studies by going to a library or preferred quiet space, and study for an hour or two to really focus in on one class.  Reward yourself the next day by going somewhere louder, and meet friends or classmates for a study group.   Other people will hold you accountable, and can also offer help or insight studying alone can’t provide.  You can also motivate yourself by studying for an amount oftime, and if you finish within the time, you’ll have a free hour to grab food or watch a Netflix episode.Tip 3: Be realistic

If it works for you, make a schedule to map out your time.  For example, study science for 30 minutes, take a 10 minute break, study for another 45 minutes, then go eat something.  Know how long you can focus well for, and be 100% committed to homework during that time, even if that’s only a 20 minute duration.  Then, you can give yourself a short break period where you do no schoolwork, rather than working for an hour or so while checking your phone every 10 minutes.  Efficiency is key around exam time, as most students have 5 or more classes.

Also, prioritize which classes you’ll need the most help with.  If math isn’t your strong suit, but you know you can write a successful timed writing for an English class, spend your time doing problems you’ve missed on past tests.