If you’re like me, this year your finals are either late in final season, take-home written assessments or instead, final papers and presentations all due within the final week of classes.
Instead of multiple choice, short answer, and long answer questions to prepare for, you have research questions, slides to prepare, and case analyses to put together and when all the deadlines come close together – it can get a little overwhelming.
Coming from my experience working these types of final assessments, I have a few tips and tricks that may help you keep motivated and avoid procrastinating, fight burnout, and hand in your best work!
1. Keep your deadlines organized
In my planner, I first put in all of my due dates and exam dates for the December finals season. That way I have an idea of what to prioritize and how well I can break up the work that needs to be done and get it all put together slowly instead of rushing.
I colour-code it simply to make it more aesthetically pleasing.
2. Break up deadlines
By breaking up deadlines into smaller ones you can keep on track and help avoid procrastinating heavily when it comes to your deadlines.
For example, I have a 10-page paper due on December 7th, which is about 2-3 weeks away from today. In these 2-3 weeks, I can break up the writing process like this:
- Deadline One: November 26th – Complete Research Notes
- Deadline Two: December 3rd – Complete First Draft
- Deadline Three: December 6th- Make Edits, Complete Second & Third Draft
- Deadline Four: December 7th – Final Edits & Hand-in
When viewing the deadlines like this, I can see my assignments in steps. For me, it makes it less stressful, and I can juggle the multiple assignments much easier.
3. Take time for yourself
While breaking up deadlines, and planning everything out can help you keep on track it does not mean that you will not feel overwhelmed at times. Burn out is real!
When these feelings start to set in, it’s important to make a minute for yourself. Here are somethings that have helped me get re-focused and remove some stress off my shoulders:
- Go for a walk and listen to music (if it’s warm enough)
- Listen to a guided meditation (here is one of my favourites by Goodful on YouTube)
- Do some self-care!
- Take a bath
- Face masks
4. Make use of resources available to you!
You are not alone! If you are struggling with a writing style, procrastination, or need some advice there are a ton of resources at the university that are designed to help you. Here is a few:
- Writing: UofT Writing Centres
- Exam Prep / Time Management: Academic Success Learning Strategists
- Procrastination and Accountability: Visit an Academic Success Virtual Study Hub
I hope these tips and resources help you succeed this finals season U of T! Good Luck!