STUDY // Study tips from a British student in Canada

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Hello there!
I have been studying at UBC for over a month now and I have given in so many assessments that it is now time for mid-terms. I know, just five weeks in and I am already freaking out over a test that is going towards 15% of my grade.

I have had to change the way I have been studying significantly in just this first month. It is crazy how the different schools structure each course and although I expected it, I didn't think it would be that different. That's for sure.
Anyway, I thought I would do a quick post combining study techniques that I have used in both England and Canada in hope that they could help with dreaded mid-terms/finals/exams!

1. If you can, make sure you keep on top of everything. I know that sounds obvious but your life really is easier if you keep up with the work. I have one module where I always pre-read, always get my notes done after the lecture and so I’m set for the mid-term. I understand the work and have notes to revise from. However, in other modules I’m having issues because I’m behind on my notes, I don’t understand it fully and I haven’t gone to much more effort to try and understand it. I know, there are only so many hours in a day and I sure haven’t got the balance right yet but if you can keep on top of everything that will make such the difference!

2. If you don’t understand something, ask your lecturer! If you or your friends don’t know, you will need to know for that exam! I have literally stayed behind after every lecture this year to ask questions, emailed lecturers to organize meetings to go through work and been at the library till late countless times looking though different text books to look for another explanation. Unless you know full well that there will be a way to avoid that question in the exam you need to know about it so don’t put it off until the night before the exam – you’ll regret it!

3. Study groups are bloody amazing. There is only so much you can get out of a text book and sometimes you need to hear someone else saying it for a concept to really sink in. Whether it’s a weekly thing or just the night before the exam, meeting up and studying with others is fun and you tend to spend a lot more time than if you are sat on your own, in your room, in the dark with a 500 mL can of red bull, tub of reduced price Ben and Jerry’s and your sanity locked up in your toiletries bag that you haven’t touched in 4 days (not speaking from personal experience at all).

4. Don’t get too stressed out and don’t worry about your grades too much. I know that sounds like the complete opposite to how you should view your grades but worrying just makes it worse! I find when I worry about my grades I just spend more time procrastinating and freaking out over how badly I’m going to do. When I just get on with it, I tend to get more work done and then I don't do badly, simple!

5. Take regular breaks. Burning yourself out isn’t going to help in the long run. I like to take 15 minute pinterest/twitter/bloglovin breaks every hour or so. I try to take a 1 hour lunch break and 1 hour dinner break if I can so I catch up on an episode of a tv show and relax. Everyone here seems to study 24/7 – the library is packed from 11am through to 6pm here – and for me that just doesn’t work. A good 45 minutes of hard studying is better than three hours of mediocre studying and leaves you more time to watch another episode of The Mindy Project.

So here is my first study tips post! I hope you find something here that helps you with your studying! If you want any more posts like this let me know!


  1. Great tips! Definitely trying them for my tests!

  2. Love your 'be happy' book :) Good luck in your tests lovely!

    Style Sunrise☀


  3. Taking breaks is how I get through studying, and I need to keep up with my notes a bit better, I rarely catch up on things I've missed and then get really behind. not good!

    Emma x
    Writing Essays With Wine


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