The final mile

You are on the final mile to completing all your courseworks and exams, the pressure is building, fear of failure or inadequate performance is cultivating. This is a situation most students face during the final zone of semester completion, a moment where all that matters is the end of that time. To get there, one might muster all the energy to successfully complete their exams/courseworks. Well, its not only about working hard but also about working smart. There may be times where we must choose between what is essential and what is extra that may or may not give us extra marks, and most importantly, we have to be realistic. For instance, should I read that optional topic or put further research on paper to demonstrate extra effort or do I just need to focus on the fundamentals? Choice and nature of whichever decision we must make is subjective. Deliberating on another reflection; does studying in a short time period and most importantly, in unprecedented times like these gets tough or not, and what did we do to benefit from the situation.

On one end of a justifiable spectrum, difficulties arose for students to prepare and write exams not only because of physical constraints like travelling or not being able to study effectively due to health conditions if affected by the virus, but also because of the mental stress Covid bought with it. However, I can say confidently for myself and friends, we overcame with the psychological distress after the first month of virus prevalence and lockdowns (but prayers and condolences for those who lost their loved ones or were separated from them), and after that, another type of anxiety slinked in our heads i.e. finals! While fear of Covid kept escalating, assessment dates neared and we realized a lot needs be done. A big question still revolves in my mind, would I have been able to successfully finish all my assessments on time and with quality had life been normal? This basically points out to my initial question of whether the environment benefited my studies.

In normal days, face-to-face classes are conducted and tutorials and labs are held where attending these becomes a compulsion as you do not want to miss out on anything. Same learning happened but this time it was online, with the following benefits; studying at our own pace and time allowed us to make our own suitable schedules, commute time between residence and classroom was saved and most importantly, we weren’t distracted by friends or peers. I realized, when we got outside, we might waste time in commuting and socializing because admit it, when we are together, focusing on a task at hand can be difficult. Stay at home policy forced us to direct our energies into exam preparation, where more hours were allotted to study rather than entertainment activities. To be honest, in normal times, I might have struggled with assessments more since I would have wasted more time. Obviously, it does not mean staying at home and Covid life is better, and hopefully these tough times end soon, but capitalizing a situation and making the best out of it reap more benefits than just dreading on at what worst times we are living in.