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KNOXVILLE – It’s finals season: the time of the semester when many students turn to all-nighters and last-minute cramming for the big tests.

The final exam or paper can be very intimidating if you are not prepared, and many students find themselves overwhelmed as they hurriedly try to cram several months’ worth of material into their already exhausted brains.

The Student Success Center at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, which provides the support students need to be successful at UT, recommends a few ways to stay focused and prepare for finals.

  • Budget your time.  Make sure you have sufficient time to study so that you are well prepared.
  • Review ALL material.  Go over practice tests, sample problems, textbooks, class notes, etc.
  • Use flashcards.  Write main ideas on index cards and review frequently; this makes it easier to retain the key concepts.
  • Know what to expect.  Learn ahead of time what kind of test you will be taking.  Ask the instructor to specify the areas that will be emphasized on the test.
  • Arrive early.  Give yourself five or 10 minutes before the exam to relax and prepare.

While these tips will help you do your best on exams, Student Success Center experts said it’s normal — and healthy — to feel some anxiety.  Being concerned can help you do your best on a test; just keep a positive attitude and decide to do your best.

It also is important to take good care of your body during finals.

Rosa Thomas, a wellness expert at Student Health Services, said you can lessen stress with a few simple activities.

“Go out in the sun for a little while to soak up Vitamin D and visit TRECs to get some exercise,” Thomas said. “You should smile a lot to make yourself feel better, and have a couple of people in your life you can communication openly with about your stress.”

Thomas also said it is important to practice good hygiene, have a good diet of fruits and vegetables, and get plenty of rest during finals.

“Watch funny movies,” Thomas said. “Shows like ‘I Love Lucy’ and ‘Saturday Night Live’ will give you a break from studying and help take your mind off of stress.”

Following these simple tips can help you finish the semester on a high note.

So, with finals only a few days away, what are you waiting for?  It’s time to hit the books, get plenty of rest, and enjoy the sunshine.

C O N T A C T :

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,