| 03.20.2018

Dreading dead week – Dead week is a time of stress instead of a time for studying


After Thanksgiving break, everyone knows what”s waiting for them when they return to campus – the mad dash to the end of the semester.

There are two typical approaches for handling the end of the semester – giving up or going full-force – and both approaches could learn a bit from each other.

Giving up on the semester might seem like the easiest way to go, but it”s important for students to try to find the motivation to power through the last few weeks.

Although one semester may not have an impact on the rest of a student”s life, it could impact their success at the University of Idaho. Sure, GPAs aren”t everything, but a high GPA does look better when applying for jobs or graduate school.

If   studying and project preparation is spread out, it will seem less painful than one day full of misery.

For those who returned from break reinvigorated and equipped with a plentiful supply of caffeine, they might want to think twice about the all-nighter they”re planning.

Students should study for finals and work on their final projects in these last weeks. However, unhealthy study habits can hurt students more than they can help. Spread out the studying, don”t cram the night before, remember to get some sleep and perhaps set some time to exercise and to relax, too.

And above all else, remember that it will be OK.

Regardless of which dead week approach students decide on, the underlying problem with this stressful time is that at UI, dead week is often synonymous with finals week.

UI has a no-test policy for dead week, but it”s a policy that”s routinely violated by professors. Students should be studying during dead week, not taking their finals one week early. The students pay for a full semester”s worth of education and they deserve to receive it.

Students have the power to speak up, remind professors about the policy and report offenses.

As a university, there is the ability to enforce the current dead week policy or abandon it and go for another option altogether.

At many universities, dead week is a time where no classes are held in order to allow students to study for finals the following week. This may not be the right solution for UI, but it”s something to consider at least.

Some may argue that students wouldn”t utilize the time off. The truth is, some won”t, but many students will and giving those students the time to study is worth it.

Some institutions don”t hold final exams. They instead require projects due during dead week.

Most students skip town as soon as their finals are completed. When finals are placed during dead week, they skip town before finals should have begun.

Dead week is a valuable time for students. It”s perhaps the last chance they have to put in the extra mile and bump their grade up in a class or two.

Whatever dead week looks like, students should take a moment to breathe, relax and refocus before they sprint toward the finish line.

– KH

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