Preparing for final exams

Senior in FAA Yesenia Flores studies architecture at the Undergraduate Library Sunday afternoon December 10th 2006. When asked how her study habits have changed since Freshman year, Yesenia said I now study more in groups because we can all share inform Dan Hollander The Daily Illini

Senior in FAA Yesenia Flores studies architecture at the Undergraduate Library Sunday afternoon December 10th 2006. When asked how her study habits have changed since Freshman year, Yesenia said “I now study more in groups because we can all share inform Dan Hollander The Daily Illini

By Kathleen Foody

Jordan Gebil remembers the stress and panic her first finals at the University caused her.

Gebil, now a senior in LAS, said she was completely overwhelmed by the pressure of taking finals her freshman year.

“Freshman year, I studied by reading every chapter we had covered in all my classes during the semester,” she said.

Three years later, Gebil still takes time to prepare for her final exams but said her techniques have changed.

“I’ve learned to skim chapters and focus most of my time on lecture notes,” she said.

Other students like Shayne Zotti and Natalie Mikat-Stevens said they’ve learned the key to being successful is to begin studying earlier.

The sophomores in LAS reflected on their first final exam experience on Thursday afternoon.

“Last year I pulled an all-nighter for a chem test,” Mikat-Stevens said. “It just didn’t work. So this year I started studying for exams a week ahead of time.”

She added that as she began taking higher level courses, finals didn’t seem as threatening.

“Finals week is just like any other week for me,” she said. “My classes are demanding year round now.”

Brian Pabst and Saumitra Bhagwat, also sophomores in LAS, agreed with Mikat-Stevens.

“My courses are harder this year, so I need to study more and prepare more for them,” Bhagwat said.

Pabst agreed and said his studying strategies haven’t really changed.

“I’m just studying a lot more and trying to prepare myself the best I can,” he said.

Bhagwat said the nature of the information he’s expected to know has changed since his freshman year.

“We’re expected to have an understanding of the topics rather than just memorizing facts,” he said.

Lisa Hinchliffe, head of the Undergraduate Library, said that the library is steadily becoming more busy. But because there are no checks done at the door to see who enters, she could not say if there is any sort of majority by year.

“I think the way you choose to study depends on you as an individual as well as the classes you’re taking,” she said. “But finals are a new experience for freshman, just like the rest of the first semester.”

Hinchliffe compared taking finals for the first time to many other situations freshmen may find themselves in when they come to the University, like going to office hours or working with a teaching assistant.

“Finals are one more aspect of getting to used to college culture,” she said.