T’was the Night Before an Exam

Exams are stressful. You dedicate months of your time and energy to learning a subject just to finally have your knowledge put to the test. The weeks leading up to your exam are utterly crucial for review. However, while it’s easily overlooked, how you spend the night prior to your exam can have a significant impact on the outcome. Here are some things to remember for the eve of your big test.

The night before your big exam, it’s best to take a rest from all of your studying. At this point, there’s no reason for cramming since you’ve been working on the material throughout the whole year. For your own confidence, review a little (up to an hour) and then put it aside for the night. Think of your brain as a sponge. There is an optimal amount of information that it can hold and by overflowing your “sponge” you risk losing vital information.

Next, it is best to keep a calm mindset and avoid further stress for your big day. Lay out your clothes and set up your book bag with pencils and a calculator so you don’t have to think about it in the morning. Then, get some rest! It is so important to actually be awake for your exam! According to a 2015 study, 54.7% of college students polled claimed to get less than seven hours of sleep on a daily basis. When cross compared to students’ grades the study concluded that longer sleep duration was associated with higher course grades and higher semester GPAs. So in conclusion, your body needs the sleep in order for you to perform at your absolute best!

Let’s talk about the morning of –make sure you eat! This is essential since you don’t want to have an upset stomach or a headache during your exam. The best option is to eat a small breakfast. Options could include: eggs, a small sandwich, cereal, or various fruits. The key is to not be completely full but not starving either. By leaving your stomach satisfied you avoid the risk of being distracted by an upset stomach or falling into a food coma mid exam.

The last piece of advice would be to avoid psyching yourself out. You can be your best friend or your worst enemy. Yes, this exam is important and you studied the best you could. At the end of the day it is just an exam that does not measure your value as a person. In this moment, there is nothing more that you can do but to just breathe. You’ve got this!