Life Hacks

How to Virtually Ace Your Finals: Tips for Remote Finals Study Prep

July 27, 2021

Last week, Purdue University announced that they are planning to re-open the campus for the fall semester in August with students receiving classroom instruction until Thanksgiving. According to Inside Higher Ed, fall breaks will be eliminated and students will finish the remainder of the term remotely after Thanksgiving. So, it looks like remote test-taking and virtual Zoom classes are here to stay for quite a while. 

With nearly every single college student studying remotely for finals at the moment, universities are having to adapt teaching methods and test-taking strategies while also ensuring students receive the education they need and deserve (and have paid for). This also means that students themselves have to prepare for a different kind of final exam than the kind they’ve previously grown accustomed to.

If you’re preparing for a final exam and want to know how to ace your remote finals, here are a few study tips that will ensure you’re ready to round out your school year with a nice bang so you can truly enjoy the summer.

Create a Study Plan

As is the case with studying for finals normally, it’s best to start your study session with a clear plan. In fact, experts note that you should start studying about a month before the exam date. A few weeks before, start to organize your notes, then create a study sheet, and then use the last week to review. As part of this study plan, you’ll want to plan out actual times and days on which you’ll study for certain classes. This means that you can use a final exam calculator to figure out which finals might weigh more than others and might impact your overall GPA more depending on your other grades in the class. For classes that are harder, plan to study at least a few hours a week more for those final exams.

Design a Study Space

One of the most effective tips for working from home is to create a separate office space from the space in which you live or especially sleep. This applies to studying for finals from home as well. So, sure, while it might be tempting to lay in bed in your pajamas to study for that organic chemistry final, you’re ultimately going to have an easier time studying if you’re sitting upright in a clean, bright space where your brain and body won’t be tempted to fall asleep. If it helps, leave the house with your books and bag, take a walk around the block and then come back inside to get your brain to “switch” into study mode. Here are more tips to get yourself and your desk ready to study more effectively.

Form a Virtual Study Group

Virtual Group
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Oxford Learning suggests that studying with others helps to test your comprehension of the material. It forces you to talk with and explain the content to others, which is the ultimate comprehension test; if you can explain something to someone else then it means you’ve learned it. Study groups are also a great way to encourage you to stay motivated (you can even study quietly alone together on screen to force each other not to look at the phone or walk off for a snack every ten minutes). And, just because your finals are remote or online doesn’t mean you can’t still form a study group! Get classmates together on Zoom, Google Hangouts, or Skype, and go over difficult material and test questions.

Change Up the Scenery

If you have the space to do so, try changing up the scenery every once in a while to maximize your attention and motivation. First, start by downloading Serene, an app that comes with a website blocker, app blocker, and distraction-free sessions to help you stay on task. Then, set a timer for 30 to 60 minutes. Once the timer goes off, get up and stretch and take your eyes off your screen. Walk around or change the scenery. This can mean moving from your desk to the kitchen table or even out on your back patio in a comfortable chair where you can continue studying in the fresh air.

Eat Well & Exercise

Don’t forget to take care of your physical and mental health while studying for remote finals. Eat a healthy, balanced breakfast full of carbs, proteins, and good fats on the morning of your exam. While you’re studying, avoid overdosing on caffeine and ensure that you’re still getting enough rest to allow your body and brain to rest enough to help you retain the information that you’re learning. Try to move your body for at least 45 minutes every day, which can include everything from yoga to trying out the new Nintendo Switch Ring Fit Adventure

Planning For & Funding a Virtual Summer

If you were looking forward to a summer 2020 internship that has recently been canceled due to the coronavirus crisis then don’t worry. We’ve rounded up some of the best remote summer internships that you can check out to help you gain (somewhat) hands-on experience during this unprecedented time.

While you’re planning for your future, remember to plan for your financial future as well. Check out our post on the 5 Best Credit Cards for College Students in 2020 and then consider signing up for a Cheese Debit Card while you’re at it.

In fact, with 0 banking fees and benefits like cashabck and saving bonus, you can earn a lot of for simple spending and saving. Working a remote job is a great way to build experience for your future career, but you simply can’t beat these kinds of savings.

Interested in a Cheese debit card? Click here to sign up!