Are you ready?! On your marks, get set, GO!

You’re whirling and running as the gun goes off, papers are flying past your face, Turnitin is calling out that your paper is 48% copied content and Canva is telling you you have a quiz due tomorrow?!


How on earth are you supposed to focus when there’s thousands of things going on around you?


Assessment time is usually talked about like a marathon; take your time, step by step, you’ll get through and sprint right at the end. But honestly, we all know that 90% of us dawdle for eleven weeks and then have two weeks of running, or falling, so fast down a hill that we can’t stop ourselves until we get through the exam period. By then we basically slam into a wall of “thank god it’s done” and pray we did okay.


I’m here to tell you that it’s okay. And we will get through it. I have a few little tips and ideas up my sleeve to help when you’re feeling like this.


  1.         The day of the exam, for the love of god, do NOT study like a mad man the entire morning. Use the notes you have, and just read through them. Don’t over do yourself. You’ll get even more flustered trying to cram everything in an hour or two beforehand. So seriously, just don’t.


  1.         Make time for breaks. Coming up just before the exam period is the olive tree markets. I know, you’re gonna say ‘the heck?! I’ve gotta study Ivy, I don’t have time for “farkets”’ (markets but you don’t give a damn). But I promise it makes sense. Go out. Get some fresh air. Take someone with you and walk around. This gives you a chance to distract yourself but also start the process of remembering what you have learnt and teaching it to someone. Who gives a damn if they want to know or not, they’re walking with you!


  1.         Lists! Schedule and plan out a time to make a list of each little task. Jotting down each small step will make the task seem less overwhelming as you will know how to complete it. Need to study for, say, a Human Bioscience course? What parts? A certain week? Or was it a part of the body? Write down those details!!


  1.         Listen to music that gets you in the zone. Hype up music? Put it on. Slow down music to focus? Put it on. Actually, I’ve made a Spotify playlist of cafe like and funky songs for you to listen to – the QR code is down the bottom if you want to check it out!


  1.         Understand that the uni workload is A LOT on top of everything else going on in your life. Reflect on how much you have done so far and how much stress uni is on a good day without it being the exam period. You have a rational response to the stress.


  1.         The last tip is to do a little breathing exercise to re-regulate your system and give you a moment to stop. It’s called box breathing. Imagine a box in your head, starting at the top left corner and breathe in for four counts. Once you hit the edge, follow it down and hold for four. Hit the edge, Breathe out for four. On that last bottom left corner, hold for four until you hit the top left again. Do this about 5 times. 


I know this period is stressful and we just want to get it over and done with and so I hope these tips help the 90% of us who have not quite planned out our semester and are now on that downward sprinting slope where we can’t stop until the exam period is over. Good luck.

Ivy-Rose study playlist QR code.

Ivy-Rose Laidler

Ivy-Rose Laidler

Hey! My name is Ivy-Rose! I’m the student life columnist and contributor for the Opus mag! I love writing about life as a student, the societal expectations, and experiences that help us grow and shape us to who we are today – as individuals and a collective! When I’m not contributing to Opus, I’m helping out local charity organisations SHIBUI Services and What Were You Wearing as well as creating content!