Finals Advice to Freshman, By a Freshman

Photo by Aja Schiller

Andrea Gallegos, freshman, studies for her finals in Karen Zohar’s Freshman Seminar class.


Finals are approaching and the school is preparing for a week of vigorous testing. As a freshman who has never experienced finals for myself, the looming dread floating in the air does not seem like finals will be very enjoyable. Taylor Pattillo, a junior at AHS, offered a few words of wisdom for any freshman who may be nervous about the upcoming testing.

“Don’t stress, and take a few hours of break from studying.” said Pattillo, “Yes, finals count for a portion of your semester grade, but they won’t make or break your life.”


In an article by The Princeton Review, it states that students’ should make sure to prioritize sleep and eating healthy, especially during finals.


Take breaks to improve your concentration when you return to studying: Veg out with an episode of your favorite TV show or play a couple rounds of Wii tennis.” Abby Easterling is a junior at AHS and agrees with taking a lot of breaks and having time to yourself to relax. She takes a more relaxed method of preparing for finals.


“Don’t stress about the finals. They really are not as hard as they seem.” Easterling said.“ Take it day by day and study for them. Don’t do any last minute studying, start your studying early.”


Study guides are often handed out by teachers, but sometimes teachers don’t make them, and students have to make their own. In cases like these, the teacher will usually at least tell the class what will be required to know on the test. Olivia Fite, a senior, has gone through teachers doing this many times and makes sure to ask for help when it is needed.


“Finals aren’t as bad as people make them seem.” said Fite, “As long as teachers make it clear what will be on the test and the student’s who need extra help ask for help.”


Some teachers don’t have a final test, and instead, have their students write an essay or make a project that reviews what they had learned over the past semester. Pattillo has written a series of different essays over the years and knows how to get through them like a pro.


“If a teacher assigns an essay as a final that they give me time to write before the actual final day,” said Pattillo, “ I always make sure to do my research on the topic. You can’t write a good essay without facts and know a bit about the background. When I’m writing my essay, I pull my notes out from class, so note taking is essential. And make sure not to worry about word count; if you need more words, then just add another analysis paragraph.”


Project and essays require just as much effort as the actual tests do. Studying and relaxing is essential to succeeding in finals, and it won’t be the end of the world if a bad grade is given.


A student checklist for finals studying:

  • Keep some food next to you so you can munch while studying
  • Make sure to take notes in class and review them when needed
  • Ask questions!
  • Study in groups if it helps
  • Know what will be on the final and prepare in advance
  • Try to relax and prioritize yourself over your grades