It’s that time of year again. Preparations have begun for Christmas and of course for students, exam season. For a lot of students, nearing the end of the semester is the most stressful time in their academic life. Work assignments, reports, and tests build up at the end of the term, all due at the same time, making things especially hard to handle.

Student exam preparation

When it comes to exams it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with everything you have to learn and understand, across your full course load. When the late night study groups, study guides and practice tests aren’t helping students can have a tendency to listen and accept their negative thoughts.

Here are some common signs and symptoms of stress:

  • Confused
  • not sleeping
  • headaches
  • feeling moody or down
  • not as involved or social with friends
  • feeling overwhelmed

Why are you feeling stressed?

  • Worried that you will fail?
  • Need to get a certain mark
  • Want to perform really well?
  • Troubles understanding the content?
  • Don’t have enough time to study?
  • Have other things happening preventing you from preparing?
  • Feeling pressured from friends and family?
  • Don’t think you will do well?

In a study released in 2013; taken from over 30,000 Canadian students from 34 colleges and universities found that 89% of Canadian post-secondary students surveyed reported being overwhelmed with all they had to do. 86.9% reported being exhausted, 56% reported feeling overwhelming anxiety and nearly 10% had seriously considered suicide.

The study also shows that a students’ academic performance was more likely to suffer due to anxiety (28.4%), sleep issues (27.1%) and stress (38.6%) instead of factors like alcohol, drugs or relationships.

There’s no doubt about it: exam time is A LOT to handle. Remember that if you are feeling stressed or anxious, you are not alone. There are services offered at universities, talk to friends and family or use a help line.

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