Healthy Study Habits for Final Exam Success

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Paige Brannon, CRC Marketing Assistant Third-year, Double Major in Management and Science, Technology, and Culture Some of the most demanding weeks that your student will spend at Georgia Tech are the last two weeks of the semester in preparation for final exams. Reviewing a semester’s worth of information in a matter of days can lead to high levels of stress and fatigue. For the sake of time, convenience, or energy, healthy habits are often neglected. However, there are a few healthful study skills that can help your student be successful on his or her final exams. When camping out at one’s favorite study hideaway for hours on end, students often choose sugary energy drinks or candy from the nearest vending machine for their study snacks. Not only are these dietary choices low in nutrients, but they are full of sugar and caffeine which cause energy crashes and even lowers one’s ability to remember important information. Instead, snacks like bananas and whole grains which contain zinc can help improve concentration. Also, milk, pasta, fish, and bread which are rich in vitamin B6 (riboflavin) can help improve memory. For energy, students can pack a peanut butter and jelly sandwich or stop at the dining hall for lean meats and leafy green vegetables, all of which contain fatigue-fighting iron. Time spent sleeping and resting significantly plummets as students approach final exams. Unfortunately for some students, cramming sessions seem to take priority over getting a full night of sleep. However, adequate sleep is important to productivity, recollection, and general well-being. Plus, feeling wired and jittery from adrenaline is certainly not preferable to being well-rested and focused when entering a test. Some of the most successful students make a good night’s sleep a top priority. In addition to a lack of sleep, students rarely take advantage of stress-reducing study breaks. Even a ten-minute break per hour of studying can lower stress and help information recall. Taking a short walk or grabbing a quick lunch with a friend can instantly reduce stress and even be fun. So please, tell your student to forget the all-nighter and take an occasional break. As sleeping and relaxation become lower priorities during these last two weeks, finding time to devote to exercise is nearly impossible. However, exercise can be one of the best tools available for increasing brain power! Scientists have proven that even just 20 minutes of physical activity improves cognition. At Georgia Tech, students have access to the Campus Recreation Center (CRC), one of the highest-rated fitness facilities in the nation. Playing a short game of racquetball, taking a swim, or even taking a quick run around the track between study sessions can make a huge difference in the ability to retain information and increase energy. Encourage your student to take care of him or herself during one of the most difficult times of the semester. It might just make those hard-earned grades easier to attain!


  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created By: Rachael Pocklington
  • Created: 12/02/2010
  • Modified By: Fletcher Moore
  • Modified: 10/07/2016

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