Crossroads

PopTarts Not Pills!How Not To Cope with Exams

On this page: Tips for Studying and Why You Should Avoid Stimulants

Stop by our SRC office or the Relaxation Station on Reading Day from 2-6pm in the Rec Center Lobby for tips on studying without drugs and managing stress as well as play-dough, bubbles, and more!

Exam Tips for Studying & Stress

Feed your brain. Drink water to keep you hydrated and green tea to stay alert, eat an apple or spicy food to increase your heart rate, and enjoy healthy proteins like soy and peanut butter to give you steady energy while you study.

Try grouping similar concepts and terms together. Information is organized in memory in related clusters.

Take advantage of state-dependent learning: Study and take the test wearing the same perfume and sit in the same seat (or area) as you do during classes when you take your exam.

Use mnemonic devices. Make up a rhyme or song to help remember specific information.

Visualize concepts to improve memory and recall. Pay attention to the photographs, charts, and other graphics in your books or make your own.

Occasionally change your study routine. Study specific topics or chapters at different locations or times of the day (History at the library, Biology at home, etc).

Take a short break every hour to stretch your body and your mind. Walk around outside, take deep breaths. Blow bubbles to help slow your breathing and heart rate.

Avoid Facebook, Instagram, and YikYak.

Use your campus resources! Submit your paper to the Writing Center or use the Writing Lab and Math Lab.

Sources & More Info: University Learning Center

Why You Don't Need Drugs or Energy Drinks to Study

You can be successful without them.
That's why 94% of students have NOT taken ADHD medications not prescribed to them in the last month and 78.2% of UNCW students have never taken prescription drugs to help them study (2012 Survey of 487 UNCW students).

They are dangerous when mixed with other drugs.
Mixing stimulants with alcohol, antidepressants, some asthma medications, or even cold medicines can create a risky combination of chemicals in your body. 25% of all emergency room visits are related to mixing alcohol with medication.

There are better ways to get energy.
That's why 85% of students use energy drinks rarely and only have one per day when do (2007 Survey of 600 UNCW students). Instead of a stimulant, drink water to keep you hydrated and green tea to stay alert, eat an apple or spicy food to increase your heart rate, and enjoy healthy proteins like soy and peanut butter to give you energy while you study.

You don't want the side effects or the crash.
Stimulants like Ritalin, energy drinks, and even coffee can cause paranoia, chronic insomnia, nausea and digestive problems. You don't need more anxiety before a big test. Symptoms of withdrawal from stimulants include headache, drowsiness, irritability, nervousness, and depression.

You could get addicted.
Ritalin and Adderall have high potential for dependency and are in the same class of drugs as cocaine and methamphetamines. Feeling like you have to use, like you can't study without the drug, or you need more of the drug to achieve the same effects are all signs of a problem.

CROSSROADS can help! Come by our office on the 2nd floor of DePaolo Hall or SRC #104 or call us at 962-4136.

For more info on stimulants, go to www.drugabuse.gov