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Managing exam stress

Whakahaere whakamātautau

18 August 2023

Exam season can be stressful. It's important to be aware of and practise ways to help manage exam stress and anxiety. It's normal to feel stressed during exam time. Everyone experiences stress differently. For some students revising comes naturally, for others it results in sweaty palms and a racing heart. Learn how to manage exam stress.

Tips to help you perform to your best throughout exam season:


Take regular breaks and schedule rewards and down time during your study day.

  • All exam study timetables need to schedule some form of break. Whether it be a 10 minute break every hour scrolling your phone or talking to a friend. Spending time away from your laptop and books can refresh your mind and leave you feeling relaxed for your next session of study.
  • One of the most typical occurrences during exam time is that the weather clears up and you are forced to be stuck inside sitting at a desk. Instead of dwelling on this schedule in 20 minutes to go for a walk or run or head to the park and play touch or frisbee. This will boost both your mood and productivity.


Ensure you exercise and spend time outside


Try not to compare yourself to others

  • ‘Comparison is the thief of joy’. Everyone is different and everyone studies differently. Whilst it is difficult to compare yourself to your peers who may have different study timetables and needs, it is important to remember to not compare someone’s revision to your own. Listening to other people’s comments or thoughts on particular concepts can sometimes bring upon added, unnecessary stress.
  • If you become stressed enough that it is affecting parts of your daily life it can be helpful to speak to someone about it. The university has support services which are free to access and the is another great free resource to help manage exams and stress.


Talk to others


Study Areas:

Variety is important when it comes to studying, especially in terms of where you study. Sitting on the same floor in the same spot of the library can become slightly monogenous after a while, so here are some other great places to study around campus.

  • Rehua Building, for non-silent study especially levels 4 and 5.
  • Ernest Rutherford, for non-silent study. There are booth seats which are comfortable and great for group study.
  • Engineering Core, is open 24/7 and is a non-silent study zone with booth seats, vending machines and computer access for engineers
  • Macmillian Brown Library, there are group study zones and discussion room. The Macmillan Brown Library has one discussion room available on Level 2. Discussion rooms can be booked onlinefor group work and discussion.
  • Engineering and physical sciences library, has 6 discussion rooms available on levels 1 and 2. Four of these have LCD screens and laptop connections. Discussion rooms can be booked onlinefor group work and discussion. 


Need More Information?


Support available at UC


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