Volume 16, Number 7


Focus: Studying for Final Exams



Melissa Tamer advises all Surrey campus Science students, General Science Double Minor Program students, Science students over 60 units without a major, and students wanting to transfer into Science from other SFU faculties.

Attending lectures, completing your readings, and taking notes are all good steps to take on the road to academic success, but don’t stop there. These additional practices will increase your chance of translating your lecture attendance, reading, and note-taking into success on exams:

  • Reviewing within 24 hours of learning new material and frequently throughout the rest of the term -- from memory as much as possible
  • Separating key concepts from details
  • Identifying questions you may have and following up by delving deeper into the material & looking for additional resources such as consulting the professor, TA or classmates
  • Making connections between what you have learned and other ideas in your course or your experience
  • Anticipating questions that you might be asked on the exam, writing them down, and later using them to practice for the test

After each lecture and reading:

  1. Recall Make a list of what you recall as the key points from the material.
  2. Summarize - Capture the essence of the material covered by writing a short summary of the points above.
  3. Reflect - List any questions that you might have about the material.
  4. Plan - Plan what you will do to obtain answers to the above questions.
  5. Connect - Write a brief explanation of any connections you notice between the material covered today and other ideas in your course. Identify similarities and differences between this material and other concepts you have studied, and think about possible ways to apply the material you have learned.
  6. Write practice questions - Paying particular attention to the connections that you noticed above, write questions that you think might come up on the exam, in the format(s) that the exam will be in (e.g.: Essay, short answer, multiple choice, etc.).

Review your notes regularly and use the practice questions you have written to prepare effectively for exams.

Taken from SLC Website -- there is also a helpful worksheet there as well!

March 2021

Calendar Notes:

April 2 & 5 - Good Friday and Easter Monday.  University services closed.

April 16 - Last day of Spring 2021 Classes and deadline to drop with a WD notation in classes.  Deadline to opt in elective grading system.

April 17-28 - Spring 2021 Exam period.

Ongoing Events:

Mindfulness Meditation Every Monday, Wednesday & Friday 12:30-1:00 pm. Click here for more info.

Bouncing Forward Online Resilience Course on Canvas. Click here for more info.

Study Hall @ Home Supported study environment for focus and motivation.  Click here for more info.


Currently no in-person advising is available due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Students can:

Phone: 778.782.7486 & leave a voicemail message. These will be returned by the advisor but slower response times than via email. Be sure to include both your student number and a callback number.  Phone appointments are also available, please email to set up.

Email: with questions and concerns. Be sure to email from your SFU email account and include your SFU student number.

Zoom: appointments available

Website <- EXPLORE it for advising explanations, tips, etc.

Typical response time within one to two business days. Longer during periods of absence/peak enrollment times. Note: we are closed weekends and holidays.

You have access to immediate or ongoing confidential support. Access by phone 1.844.451.9700 or download the App from the App Store or Google Play.

Culturally-relevant support and counselling in multiple additional languages is also vailable.

Travelling outside of North America and need access? Call 001.416.380.6578

Financial Aid & Assistance advising @ all Campuses 

In-person advising is not available at this time due to COVID-19 containment meaures.  

You can reach them by phone at 778.782.6930 Monday to Friday 9:30am - 3:30pm.  

You can also reach them by email at


How can I improve my study skills and use the final exam to improve my overall grade?

SFU CO-OP Online Courses

Interviewing 101 - Click here.

Effective Intercultural Communication - Click here.

Job Search Success - Click here.