Surviving the University’s Boogeyman: Midterm Season

Written by Andres Salazar

Although you might not see it immediately, it’s there, slowly creeping towards you, even when you’re sleeping. Every breath you take gets closer and closer until one day; it will be right in front of you, causing nothing but fear, cries of anguish, and sleep-depriving stress. If you think I’m talking about a horrible monster lurking around Lethbridge’s quiet streets at night, you’re wrong; it’s much worse: midterm season.

            With the midterm season getting closer, we’ll all have to face this boogeyman at one point or another. The exams mark the halfway point of the semester and the summary of everything you have learned up until this point. For most of us students, midterms are seldom a good time. These tests are synonymous with lack of sleep, spending hours staring at textbook pages, and forgetting to eat because we’re so busy studying. In short, this time of the semester usually sucks. But don’t Scream; it doesn’t have to be so Insidious! There are some things you can do to avoid this Nightmare on University Drive. Taking some time to prepare for these midterms can prevent you from feeling like you’re being attacked by the Texas Chainsaw Massacre and make it feel more like a walk across a quiet place.

            First, before getting too stressed about studying, make sure that you give yourself some time to sit down and figure out what midterms are coming and when you have them. Find out which class has its midterms first and the exact day and time the exams are done. Suppose you have multiple days to take your exam, which is common with tests done at the Moodle testing center, make a schedule of when you’ll be taking the tests; make sure you understand your timetable and give yourself enough time to rest and mentally, and physically, prepare for the next one. Tackle your midterms like an NFL football play and cover all the bases you need in your schedule: testing time, resting time, and prepping time. Like professional athletes, build a schedule and plan to get a good-looking grade or win the Super Bowl.

            As applicable as making a schedule for your preparation is, don’t forget that you still need to know what you’re doing. It’s important to remember that you have to study well for your exams. Making a study plan will help you stay on track with learning and preparation. It’s a good idea to make a checklist that you check off once you’ve reviewed something, as it will help you keep track of what you know and don’t know. Just as important as knowing what you need to study, it is genuinely essential that you start early. Success in midterm season results from a marathon rather than a lightning-speed sprint. Make sure you give yourself enough time to take everything in slowly. Your brain simply cannot function at its peak performance when you’re cramming half a semester’s worth of the geography lectures that you didn’t go to.

            Of course, none of this preparation or planning is meaningful if our noggins are not in the suitable mental space to perform. It’s just as essential to provide yourself time to relax every day. Cars need oil changes; fish need water, and you need rest. Try your best to give yourself a whole night’s sleep and give yourself break times throughout the day. With a complete factory reset, your brain will undoubtedly feel fresher, more alert, and more confident going into your midterm exams. Although it seems common sense to get quality rest, sleeping and relaxing are usually the first things thrown out the window once the midterm season starts. It’s a well-known fact that the less a person rests, the worse they perform.

            The midterm season is one of the spookiest times of the year. However, in the same way that you don’t need to worry about a horror movie hurting you because it’s just a movie, midterms are nothing to be scared of. The important thing is to ensure that you give yourself the right time to study and rest while having a plan to stick to. Your midterm season will be marked by success if you stick to a plan that can help you stay in control. You’ll find the tests just about as scary as that terrible movie where Jason Vorhees tries to kill Lisa Ryder from Murdoch Mysteries in space. 

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