Walking around the library and watching students buried in their books, one experiences the intensity of midterms. The tower of stress and anxiety builds up by the minute.
On the evening right before the start of midterms week, students stay up late studying laboriously and catching up on papers. Flipping pages, everyone from freshmen to seniors is captivated by the midterm fever.
The overwhelmed and confused freshmen sit around the library pondering the various possibilities of their exam results.
College freshman Simran Valecha, an international student from India coming out of her philosophy exam, expressed her first midterm experience.
“I cried for the first time, I was missing the feeling of home and I was anxious. I didn’t know how to handle it and the pattern of study was so different then what it was back in India,” Valecha said.
Valecha advises students who have not yet taken their midterms to “study regularly and be aware of the questions, [because] they’re very tricky!”
To help out these young newbies, the Wheel asked a couple of sophomores about their approach concerning the midterms.
“I work out with my friends, ’emotionally’ eat and listen to music to deal with the stress. I start things early and study with friends. I even try getting study groups together and make copious notes in class. To all the freshmen, don’t let your social life get in the way of your academic life, balance it out and get plenty of sleep! Go to your classes and email your professors, that’s all really helpful.” – College sophomore Izzie Lynn
“Midterms are just typical exams, don’t psyche yourself out and treat them like normal exams. Find your spot in the library/campus where you can work the best and take it one moment at a time.” – College sophomore Shawn Kripalani
The tower of anxiety is ironically also the tower of solace for some while they sit in their spots and figure out how to work through the midterms.
“I go to the library to stay focused and put Post-its on everything that needs to be done. I sleep to deal with my stress and listen to music while studying. Sometimes studying in groups is really helpful and sleeping also helps in the memorizing process. I would say planning ahead and not waiting until [the] last minute will help reduce the last minute panic. Think of the midterm as though it was tomorrow and work on it one week before.” – College sophomore Jason Yu
“I generally look at the syllabus and plan ahead. Most of the times I sit down with my calendar a month in advance to figure out the free time slots and which part of the month gets heavier. I prioritize and make lists and plan my calendar out around club meetings and tests. To deal with stress at such times, I go to activities after school such as the salsa club, watch a lot of Netflix and go grab meals with friends. All the freshmen out there, go out there and get involved. Meet new people and especially upperclassmen, they have experienced different exams and have good test taking skills. Learn from their experiences alongside networking.” – College sophomore Ilse Becerra
An Nguyen, another sophomore exchange student, follows along the lines of Becerra for managing her time but believes in running, doing yoga and watching YouTube comedy shows, which are short so she doesn’t get hooked on them.
“Practice problems and go for office hours. Get people to proofread your documents and, well, naps are great. Take naps. You can’t push yourself to work all the time,” said Nguyen.
“I work in the library all the time and spread my time. I keep an assignment notebook with a little calendar, which helps in [the] organization of my time. I take study breaks and call my parents every time I feel over-stressed. Chocolate definitely tops the list of stress relievers. I think as a freshmen, I learnt that last-minute studying isn’t helpful at all. Grab a bite to eat before your exam and get plenty of sleep. If you haven’t been able to do it the night before, the hour before the exam won’t be very helpful either.” – College sophomore Tori Bandyopadhyay
One last piece of advice from the words of the wise:
– By Ksheerja Batra, Contributing Writer