Tips on how not to study

Student-Studying

A Brown student studying hard.

Midterm season has arrived in full-force these past few weeks. This has motivated countless students to settle down among the stacks, open their books and laptops, and revisit their old classroom notes and problem sets in an effort to succeed at all the challenges that Brown offers to them. Filled with personal discipline, an ability to delay gratification, and above all else a striving passion to perform, these devoted students will approach their exams and essays with a deep confidence in their abilities, a focused and prepared mind, and several nights of undisturbed sleep.

Here are some tips that might help you and other students avoid their looming work for the next cycle of midterms.

1. Think About How Much You Work You Have

There’s nothing better to distract you from studying than to think about how much work you have. I mean, really try to ponder it—all of the material that you’re responsible for in each class, how many words you’ll have to write in total for your essays—whatever it is, just make sure you’re very aware of how much you’ll need to accomplish in the next week. For the next step in not working, try to imagine the worst possible consequences that could happen if you screwed up. Linger on all of this for a few hours, and you’ll be well on your way to not getting anything done.

This pretty much identical to the one before it.

Identical to the one before, except this guy seems more stressed.

2. Talk to Other People About How Much Work You Have

Closely related to number one, a great way to be unproductive is to complain to others about how much you have to do in the upcoming weeks. Parents, friends, acquaintances, random people in line at the Ratty, all can be effectively used as tools to avoid finishing work. Try to distract them from their own work as you complain, so they become more anxious about what they have to do as well. The less industrious the people are around you, the better you’ll be at not studying.

But remember: always make sure that they know that you, ultimately, have it much harder than them, and are worthy of their sympathy.

Does anyone study with all these books?

Has anyone ever studied with that many books?

3. Wait to Talk to a TA or go to Office Hours

If you really want to make sure you that you feel unaccomplished by the weekend, never start work on anything until you’re fully sure that you have the approval and understanding of your professor and/or TA. Go during peak hours of their schedule so you’ll have to wait in a long line, and never ask them direct questions related to your work, because remember,  you haven’t started that. Instead, focus on broad, generic ideas that they have already mentioned in class, or ideally would be answered either on the syllabus or prompt—things that will bring you no closer to sitting down and working. But be careful, you might accidentally leave feeling productive, so try to remain skeptical of whatever advice they have to offer.

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BlogDailyHerald Presents: 140 tracks to make finals bearable

Even finals can be made a little better with some good music, right? Wrong. Right! So, instead of actually doing our own work, we compiled a killer study playlist that’ll hopefully make living in the Rock (or Scili!) slightly more bearable. Be sure to comment below with your favorite songs or any ones that we missed.

Happy finals!


How to get your finals done

Finals season is upon us, folks. If you’re like me, that means your day probably looks something like this: You spend a lot of time drinking iced coffee outside, and then when that inevitable cloud covers the sun for the rest of the day, you proceed inside to look at a blank word processor until it’s time for bed, at which point you watch cooking shows until you fall asleep and do it all over again the next day (don’t deny it).

But someone has to write that paper due tomorrow! Someone needs to study for that test! Someone needs to make that presentation! And unfortunately, it’s going to be you. Here are some ways to buckle down so you can make the most of Cinco de Mayo (which is tomorrow, people. Priorities.)

1. All nighters. Actually though, don’t do it. You’ll hate yourself, everyone will hate you. Your body was not designed to stay up for that many hours. Plus, I can hear your heartbeat from here after all those energy drinks you consumed. Oh, and you’ll look like a zombie.

Tell me I look tired one more time

Tell me I look tired one more time

2. GET THIS APP: SelfControl. Oh my god it will change your work ethic. You create a list of all of the websites you like to go to, set a timer for any amount of time, press “go,” and then the app prevents you from visiting these sites until the timer runs out. Like your computer actually won’t let you. Is it a little pathetic you need a computer to keep you in check? Yes. Will you get your shit done? Absolutely. Now if you want to stall, at least you’ll have to do it with people, not Buzzfeed.

3. Set up a reward system. 5 pages of a paper, treat yourself to froyo. 5 more and you get a Ben & Jerry’s sundae. 5 more and you get a Johnny Rockets milkshake. For some reason the only rewards I can think of are frozen dairy products but whatever ’tis the season.

Above: friends.

Above: friends.

4. Just do it. You’ll feel better, and you won’t turn green with envy when your drunk friend texts you at 4p.m. on a Wednesday because THAT DRUNK FRIEND WILL BE YOU.

Images via, via.


12 days of Flogmas: TV show winter breaks

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As I have been informed by many of my friends, finals period for some people actually means watching less TV than you would be able to otherwise. As much as they have tried to explain this concept to me, I remain confused. What are you doing all day? Studying? But you still eat right? And breathe? Okay, then I don’t get it…

As I have tried to explain to them, some individuals, myself included, actually see reading/finals period as a great opportunity to spend a few extra hours watching TV as a way of preserving mental sanity. Sure, I still work, but if I’m going to spend an entire 60 minutes working on a paper, I’m gonna need a 90-minute reprise (I already feel like I’ve been writing this article for an eternity). Continue Reading


12 Days of Flogmas, Day Ten: The SciLi bathroom sitch

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A long day of studying is like a long night of drinking, in the sense that you always have to pee. Between the absurd amount of water you’re consuming because you don’t have time to eat and the hourly venti lattes, urination (amongst other forms of bodily excretion) is a must. Since the SciLi is such the go-to prison cramming location, you’d think it would be able to accommodate our relentless bathroom needs. Right? Wrong. VERY, VERY wrong.

I do most of my SciLi work in the basement, which fits more people than any other floor. It also happens to have the worst bathroom situation—not only on campus, but perhaps in the world. Let me spell it out for you: there’s one female bathroom and one male bathroom (problem #1 arises: gender neutral, where are yoooouuuu?!). The bathrooms contain a sink and a single stall, in which is a single toilet.

So it appears that the SciLi basement bathroom is single-use, assuming that only one person is using the toilet at a time. Hold up… you’re catering to a room with an occupancy of 336. Only one person per gender can go to the bathroom at a time? If you’re going to make it so exclusive, you might as well put a lock on the bathroom door and call it a day. Enough with the false hope of a swinging door. If you’re only going to present us with one stall in a faux-multiperson restroom, at least make the rest of the bathroom large enough to fit the four people always waiting in line. I’m done with being slammed by a swinging door that shouldn’t even have the ability to swing.  Continue Reading


Little Victories at Brown: Finals edition

(BlogDH) Little Victories

With finals in full swing, we thought a third and final round of Little Victories was a very necessary way to finish out the semester. Blog has been a little pessimistic with our 12 Days of Flogmas. We’re here give you a pick-me-up and remind you that the only reason you think you hate this place right now is because it’s finals—it’s definitely not because you actually hate it (you love it here, I promise). We present to you a holiday/finals themed round of Little Victories. You got dis!

1. When you get the free pizza at the Rock and the SciLi. Such a solid study break kept our somber students as happy as clams. If there’s one thing college students love, it’s free shit. Everyone knows that the best kind of free shit is free food. And how great are those mini-brownies they put out? It’s Domino’s pizza, too, a very high quality and expensive brand ( ;) ). This is a prime example of Brown showing that it cares about us.

2. When you witness the Naked Donut Run by pure chance. The Naked Donut Run happens unannounced twice a year. That means that you have eight opportunities to witness it during your tenure at Brown (if you go abroad, only seven). The NDR is basically as anticipated as Beyoncé’s surprise album. Generally, you have no idea when it’s going to happen, but you know it has to happen. When a completely nude guy saunters up to you, toting his paper plate o’ donuts out of the blue, your jaw drops—you’re smiling, you’re laughing, and you’re always thinking, “wow, I love Brown” all at once. Continue Reading