How to Ace Exam Week

One of the most difficult weeks each term for student athletes (and regular students) is mid-term week. Unlike final exams, where the NCAA puts restrictions on the amount of activity we can do for our sport, mid terms  are like a WWE steel cage fight. Late nights in the library, early mornings in the weight room, long afternoon practices, you start to wonder at what point you are allowed to take a step back and breathe.

The good news is that you’re gonna get through it and with all the resources available, you can do more than just getting by. So to help you grab exam week by the (basket) balls, I have asked some of my fellow student athletes at Drexel for some of the things they do to survive and conquer exam week. Below you can find the advice and tips they have provided.


Madi (left), a Junior Captain  on the soccer team says: “Plan Your days in advance and schedule time to work out or do some type of physical activity. Get some endorphins going, it makes you hate yourself less.”

When you find yourself dozing off, going for a run and getting some fresh air may be just what you need to keep on grinding. Madi might be a little dramatic with the last bit, but she is right. Maintaining a level head during stressful times like exam weeks is huge. Exercise will help you do this and give you that extra boost you need for those late nights in the library

1459677_897011373689683_897524153839301274_n.jpgJake (pictured right), a Junior captain on the lacrosse team believes “Exam week is way easier if you put in the work during the weeks leading up to exam week.”

Jake makes a great point. Do your best to stay on top of your work early on in the semester and don’t dig yourself into a hole. Obviously this is easier said than done with an already busy schedule but you will make your life a lot easier by doing this.


Jude with his dad after a fall scrimmage. (Photo Credit- Jude Whalen)

Jude (pictured left), a Junior on the lacrosse team suggests that you: “Be efficient with your time and don’t procrastinate.”

While computers, Ipads and other technology make studying easier, they can also be a pretty big distraction. If you find yourself being the kind of person that is easily distracted, throw your phone on Do Not Disturb mode  and look into downloading computer apps like studylockdown that block you from accessing things like Facebook and anything else that  will get in the way. Avoid wasting time at all costs and save time any way you possibly can!

Devon signing her National Letter of Intent. (Photo Credit- Devon O’Shaughnessy)

Devon (pictured left), a Junior womens Lax player recommends that you: “Make sure you are eating three square meals a day.”

Devon gives useful advice here as making sure that you are keeping a balanced diet and not skipping meals will give you the energy you need to stay focused and alert through your classes and allow you to power through studying.

and Alex (pictured below) , Junior on the women’s lax team like to:  “Plan a trip or choose a way to reward yourself for the week after exams so you have something to look forward to.”

Picture of Alex and Molly
Alex and Molly Celebrating at a holiday party after wrapping up finals. (Photo credit – Alex’s Facebook)

I really like this idea Molly and Alex provided. Knowing that you have some hard earned time to yourself is huge for getting through those late nights. Find something to motivate you to get through this thing and even reward yourself even more if you do exceptionally well. As athletes we are competitive by nature, so create a challenge and kick some ass.

Gianna With her parents after a game. (Credit- Gianna’s Facebook)



Gianna (right), a Sophomore on the women’s soccer team has three keys to success: “Coffee, study early and stay organized. 

Jake (pictured below), A senior Lacrosse captain says: “Time management and coffee are essential to staying on top of your workload. It’s also important to give yourself enough time to really understand the material.” 

Senior Captain Jake defending against The University of Virginia. (Photo credit – Jake Kiernan)


Gianna and Jake are big advocates of coffee to help them get through the long hours during exam week. I too am crazy about caffeine, but I would be careful with how much you consume. You want to eventually be able to fall asleep and you will not be thinking like you normally would when you’re all tweaked out on caffeine. It’s also important to remember that we are athletes and our body needs to be functioning at the highest level possible for us to be successful. Not getting enough rest and loading up on caffeine to compensate will really harm our performance and health.

I think the advice these student athletes have provided is great. While our schedules are crazy, applying this stuff will definitely make your life easier. Each person above has multiple years of experience as a student athlete at Drexel so they know what it takes to be successful. The final piece of advice I have for you is if and when shit hits the fan, don’t be afraid to talk to your advisors, professors or coaches.They will do everything they can to help you.

Remember these tips, best of luck and go grab those midterms by the (basket)balls. If you have any of advice you think should be included, add them to the comments section.

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