The Semester Might be Ending but the Assignments Don’t Stop for Anyone

By Hope Faulkingham Contributing Writer

   There is hustle and bustle on the UMF campus as the semester is coming to a close, but the students will keep burning the midnight oil until the very last test.

   This is an incredibly busy time of year for everyone, with projects, presentations and exams that could potentially make or break passing a course. Add on practicums and outside activities and you have yourself a college cocktail called finals week.

   Katie Shupp, a sophomore Elementary Education major, is one of many students who agrees this critical week is overwhelming. “I mean it depends on the classes, but I feel like 99% of the time it is so stressful,” Shupp said with a small grin on her face and a chuckle.

   Though Shupp handles the workload pretty well, many students struggle to control the anxiety, especially freshmen, where it is their first time experiencing college academia. Shupp suggested that taking time out of study sessions to relax will allow for a little less stress.

    “I work for like a few hours and then I take a break,” said Shupp. “I go on my phone, go on Facebook, text someone, talk to my friends, eat food…I eat a lot of food, I stress eat,” Shupp laughs at herself once again and shakes her head with a big smile.

   Kim Day, a senior at UMF, also shared her thoughts and ideas on how she stays sane during this crazy time. “I wouldn’t say I have one class that is more stressful than another,” said Day. “All of my classes have been equally stressful and being in practicum adds to that, especially with student teaching right on my heels.”

   Much like Schupp, she always remembers to take a break from the all-night study session or hour long study group to keep herself healthy and happy. “I cope with my stress by trying to hang out with my friends or taking a day to myself to just relax.”

   But students are not the only ones feeling the pressure of these last few weeks, some professors are also feeling the anxiety of creeping up on them.

   “Finals-period is also stressful for professors because of the preparations for various final exams, projects and papers for the classes they teach and the feedback on assignments, essays, tests, etc.,” said Pu. “Not to mention the more frequent visits from students to office hours during this time of the semester and some impending deadlines for their own research work.”

   Pu also added some of her own advice saying, “If you’ve been keeping up with everything in a class and have been doing well all along, you shouldn’t over-stress yourself. Try to relax while getting prepared and ready to pass the last hurdles of the semester.”

  Students can be most successful in these whirlwind semester endings by staying calm and keeping focused to pass exams and presentations with flying colors.

Tips for Surviving Finals Week

Tips for Surviving Finals Week

By Kiara Morrissette – Contributing Writer

   As the semester winds down, students all around UMF begin to prepare for their final exams. With over 2,000 students come several different ways to study for finals.

   Knowing the importance of these exams can cause a lot of students to become stressed or have major anxiety. It can be a balancing act between finding the time to study for exams and our busy schedules as college students. For some, it’s quite challenging, while others have been able to find methods that help them relax and focus on their studies.

   Elina Shapiro, a senior Psychology major, studies by going over PowerPoints and by rereading chapters in the textbook. “Sometimes I make my own study guide or I answer the questions on the study guide that the professor has given out,” said Shapiro. “I go over the information until it sticks.” She reviews any key pieces of information before finals, but she also studies throughout the semester, in order to reduce stress.

A bulletin board in FAB promoting several useful ideas
Credit: Kiara Morrissette

 Every student seems to have their own preferred study environment. Most students like to find quiet areas, away from any noise or distractions, so that it’s easier for them to focus. Kelsey Dunn, a senior Early Childhood Education major, said, “I have heard that students study inside their cars. I don’t really recommend studying in your room because there is this thing called Netflix and a comfy bed.”

   As much as every student loves to be prepared for their final exams, there are some things that can affect your level of focus. Krystal Livermore, a senior Elementary Education major, explained that she believes “it is important to isolate yourself in order to study because then you can focus better.”

  Livermore reviews notes, quizzes, and tests for finals. She also mentions that there are things that you can’t study for because sometimes professors don’t clearly explain what will be on their finals.

While studying for a final exam can be stressful, there are some things that you can do to reduce the level of stress or anxiety you may have. Shapiro has a few tips that may be able to help somebody get through finals and reduce their stress levels. “My best tips to survive finals are eat well, sleep well (if possible), do something fun (go out to eat, watch something fun, workout, etc.) along with your studying,” said Shapiro. “Mix in stress relieving activities!”

  It’s easy for students to get distracted or procrastinate when they are studying for an exam, especially in today’s world where cell phones and social media are a big part of our everyday lives. “Turn your phone off or silence it and put it away,” Dunn said. “Out of sight, out of mind.”

Dunn also has some words of encouragement for students who may have trouble focusing and are worried about passing their finals. “Have confidence that you can pass,” she said. “Believe in yourself and believe that you will get a good grade.”