3 Colorful Study Tips for Finals Week

By Cara Chiaramonte

Image Courtesy of Ron Doke

I’ve always thought of Thanksgiving break as a mean week put in place to tease us college students into thinking the semester is already over. I appreciate the holiday, of course, but it’s really hard to get back in the swing of things when there are only two weeks left in the semester. How are we supposed to study for finals when all we can think about is Mom’s Christmas ham or, in my case, graduation?

You spend your time writing notes or reading assigned texts, but do you ever actually look back to read the notes you’ve taken? Thankfully, color can help with that. Color-coding notes or study materials helps you remember details that may appear on your tests. These three study tips may help you pass your final exams with flying colors during the next few weeks (pun intended):

Use colored index cards.
Try using colored index cards, especially if you need to categorize important people or periods of time. For example, I learned about a couple types of feminists in my women’s studies course this semester. For liberal feminists, I use blue index cards. For radical feminists, I use red or pink index cards.

Spice up your notes with colored pens or highlighters.

Constantly using a black or blue pen can become dull, and it can get overwhelming if nothing stands out on the page. Separate points using different colored pens and/or highlight important details using a highlighter. I typically use colors like red, pink, green, orange and purple.

Don’t overdo it.
It’s important not to highlight everything because it won’t make anything stand out. Fast Company’s Kevin Purdy spoke to attorney Jennifer Phillips who said using too much color can “backfire.” Whenever she uses too much color, she’s unable to prioritize the important facts and finds herself rereading the material over and over again.

Good luck, Gators!

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