Monday 4 April 2016

Survival Guide for the Final Months of Term

Grace and Lottie Naughton ensured this guide was written by students for students.

As this year of university is coming to an end soon, we all know too well that it means deadlines, deadlines, exams and more exams. The end of your year is in sight but as students we only know too well that this often brings one of the most stressful times of year. Here is some advice from current students across a range of university, disciplines and years:
Grace Anderson (Psychology, 4th Year): 
As a final year student, the end of this term marks an end of my university experience (fingers crossed!). Therefore, with a dissertation looming over my head, essays and exams to revise for this is the time to really knuckle down. However, this is easier said than done! Here are my two tips for surviving the final months of term:
  • DO look after yourself, you need time to relax as well as working hard
  • DON’T spend all day in bed, burying your head in the sand isn’t going to help (seriously trust me, I have tried and tested this!)
Lottie Naughton (Psychology, 4th Year):
Final year has been the most stressful of my university journey so far. I have often asked myself if it’s all worth it and if i’ll be able to get through it. But I did! I’m here and I’m surviving! What’s really helped me so far:
  • DO plan your days. It really helps me to write a to do list every day with small work focused goals to achieve.
  • DON'T overwhelm yourself. It’s all well and good saying you’ll write half your essay in one day, but that’s not realistic! Do small amounts every day and you’ll be finished before you know it.
Katy Gilroy (Journalism and Creative Writing, 3rd Year): 
Surviving the last semester - it can be really tough when there's deadlines, exams and all sorts of end of year nights out; it's important to know that you’re nearly at the end and you WILL get through it. Here’s my top tips:
  • DO utilise the support system you have in place, whether that be friends, family or a supportive lecturer.
  • DON'T procrastinate too much - Netflix is tempting and we all need a nap, but you’ll feel so much better when all your work is done and it will be easier to relax.
Heather Guerin (Psychology, 4th Year):
The final few months of a degree are really challenging, it feels a bit like running a marathon where you have to sprint at the end, just keep in mind how good it's going to be when you've finally made it across the finish line.
  • DO take time out for friends and family and fun (away from all the psychology fun obviously).
  • DON'T leave one day out of the week to do work, try a small amount every day!  
Saira Wood (MPsych Graduate Student):
The last semester of any year is daunting, whether you're revising for exams or looking at the next step on your career ladder, whether you're off for a placement year, or leaving altogether! But have faith - you can do this, in fact you're DOING it! Keep it up!
  • DO Knuckle down - this semester will FLY by and before you know it, you’re handing in your work and summer is here. Don’t waste the time you have.
  • DON'T forget that everyone learns differently - whether it’s revision techniques, or planning work, it’s great to have options but don’t assume what works for someone else will work for you. If you work better under pressure closer to deadlines, then don’t feel bad when others start earlier. Work at your own pace.
Sophie Rees (2nd Year, Journalism and  English Literature Student):
Whilst getting along with life at university your time there goes extremely fast. One moment you’re looking forward to a new year of studies and experiences, then the next moment you’re preparing to finish a whole year. Here are a few dos and don’ts in coping with the last few weeks of the semester:
  • DO look forward to a summer break - it may seem like the last thing on your mind when you’re working your way through uni work but do take some time to plan your summer. Think of ways you can relax or try a new hobby! Also think of possible opportunities like work experience and internships you may wish to consider and build some good skills up.
  • DON’T stress and panic yourself over workloads or deadlines due in at the end of the semester. Start your assignments with plenty of good time to spare to allow yourself to really express your knowledge and understanding of your studies through your work.
Kerry Walke (Cruise Management, 4th Year):
The final semester of a year is always a shock to the system. It feels like every piece of work ever is due in one week!  It’s so easy to get caught up in going out or enjoying the slightly nicer weather, but it’s crucial that you prioritise correctly.
  • DO make a list of everything you have to do before the end of term, use colour and friendly but assertive language - don’t scare yourself but have a grasp on your workload. Prioritise the list by due date and amount of work, then plan your social life around that.  
  • DON’T forget to switch off - it’s not uncommon to still be thinking about it when you’re lying in bed trying to sleep. Find a cut-off point in the day where you stop thinking about work and relax, so you can get a good night sleep and be fresh and ready to tackle any challenges in the morning.

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