Fourth Year Revision Tactics
The final term of the year is always a weird one. Campus is busy as we all flock to departments and the library, preparing for our end of year exams. This year, it feels even stranger, as a few exams is all that stands between me and finishing university! Since a large chunk of this year is assessed with my fourth-year project, compared to previous years I don’t have many exams.
It’s not just the number of exams that makes this an extra-ordinary term; the way I feel about my exam period has altered as well. In previous years, I always had at least another year at university up ahead. Yet I won’t be at Warwick next year! I am very excited about progressing after university, but it still feels a little bittersweet that I will only be a student for a few more weeks.
To keep me motivated and balanced, I have been trying really hard to perfect my study-life balance, and ensure I am not putting unnecessary pressure on myself. I am not the sort of person who can put in 12-hour days in the library, so I have been coming on to campus and working from around 9am-6pm in the physics workroom. The atmosphere there is a little less intense than the library can get, and it means I can also catch up with some of my friends. It’s important to set boundaries when you sit with other people though; if you feel like you get distracted and aren’t as productive, working in the quiet spaces in the library may be better.
Every day, I try and plan something fun and different to prevent me spending all day at a desk! My favourite things to do are meeting a friend for coffee at Curiositea, doing a lunch time yoga class, eating my lunch outside or going to the gym.
To make sure I can concentrate on work without my stomach rumbling all the time, I have been packing myself up with a healthy lunch and plenty of snacks to keep me going. I’m not going to lie, I have been eating plenty of chocolate too, but I do think my concentration is better on healthier snacks. In physics, we have access to a kitchen, so we can keep hydrated with cups of tea and water as well.
When I go home in the evening, I don’t do any revision; this is my time to relax, catch up with friends, cook dinner and do a hobby. I love to cook, so often I bake or cook something tasty from scratch for dinner. The lull in between exams is when I like to stock up my freezer, so if I have an exam or a particularly stressful day, I know that dinner is waiting for me when I get in.
Having a balanced weekend is something I have often found hard to do. My current plan is to spend the weekend doing a mix of household jobs, like food shopping, washing and hoovering, with cooking meals for the next week, seeing my friends and doing some revision. Being in Leamington means that I can pop to the shops or Jephson gardens for some fresh air. There is always something going on too! This Sunday there was EcoFest next to the Pump rooms. In the gardens, there were lots of food stands, eco-friendly stalls and local charities and groups. The live music in the bandstand was fab, and I enjoyed having lunch listening to some jazz.
If there is anything that I have learnt that I want to pass on to you all it is the importance of maintaining a healthy balance. Keep up with revision so you can go into your exams with confidence in yourself and your ability. More importantly though, make sure you look after yourself (and keep an eye on your friends as well) so you are happy and healthy.