Your Survival Guide To Final Exam Week

exam week

Panic has struck the campuses of thousands of students with final exam week upon us. No longer can you procrastinate. No longer can you justify that you don’t need to know information until later in the semester. No longer can you hide from your fears.

This is because now is the time where you need to learn what seems like the entire course in a matter of days. With that difficult task in front of you, what ensues is usually chaos, stress, and craziness.

However, you can use the following list to better relax and get out of finals week alive.

How To Survive Finals

1. Find your study place

It can be impossible to focus if you’re in the wrong study environment. Before you pick any random place, consider the people around you, distance to outlets, background noise, and other variables outlined in this post that can make all the difference in your performance.

2. Study smart

Arguably the best blog posts on this site are my study and paper strategies: The Chip Away Method, Focused Preparation, and Writing An Effective Paper. These three posts lay out plans to get an A on any final exam or paper in your way while optimizing your time.

3. Visit your professor

Even if you don’t have big concerns before the final, visit your professor with some general questions about the exam. It’s possible this conversation will lead you to special insight on the final, which helps you study the most important material and ignore what isn’t relevant. Plus, who knows, maybe your effort to visit will be enough to bump up your final grade if it’s in the middle area.

4. Take breaks

Your brain works better in spurts of studying compared to a marathon. It needs a break to reenergize and refocus, otherwise your productivity will decrease and you will be prone to procrastinate. While it seems counterintuitive, giving your brain a breather is the wisest move to get more work done.

5. Workout

During your break, go to the gym for 30 minutes. Working out will make you feel good, release stress, and improve your efficiency when you come back to your task. What else do you need in your break?  

6. Relieve stress

I’m all for buckling down and shutting out the rest of the world, at times. But, this plan doesn’t work all week. Give yourself the freedom to stop studying so you can hang out with your friends, play video games, watch a movie, or do what you enjoy to release stress. This parody video of Let It Go from Frozen is what I was about during exams last year.

7. Eat for energy

In high-stress situations like exam week, the first thing you want to grab is probably some unhealthy Lay’s, Skittles, and McDonald’s. But, your body needs to refuel with nutritious foods to stay energized throughout the week. Check out this post for 11 Foods For When You Start Eating For Energy.

8. Sleep well

I’ve lived the all-nighter lifestyle and the good night’s sleep lifestyle in college. Without a doubt, my happiness and grades improved dramatically when I slept. Sleeping gives your brain the downtime it needs to process and categorize all the information your eyes are pouring through. Without sleep, you walk into the exam with a dazed mind and put yourself in position to struggle.

9. Avoid exam mistakes

If you’re not aware of them, dumb exam mistakes can torment you throughout finals week. You leave a question unanswered, spend too much time on one question and don’t finish the test, or turn in your exam and forget to go back and change an answer. All of these errors will upset you and make final exam week worse.

10. Realize final exams will end

Maybe the only saving grace of exam week is that it’s only a week. No matter how tired and awful you feel, the madness will eventually end. So, run through this list, stay positive, and get ready for the Winter Break festivities!

With all that said, you might be over-stressing for no reason if GPA doesn’t matter in college.

Readers, what helps you succeed during exam week? What distracts you from studying for finals? Do you have any final exams nightmare stories?

Brian Robben

Brian Robben is the founder of Take Your Success, a site dedicated to helping entrepreneurs and wantrepreneurs grow a profitable business and reach freedom. For in-depth training, visit: