Surviving the exam period as an international student

Hello buddy, hope you are doing well and not stressing too much about assignments and exams.

How can we, as international students, survive the exam period? Although preparing for exam time can be stressful, I have to confess I like this season (please don’t kill me). When I have to prepare for exams, I start studying more intentionally, therefore I start enjoying my degree more.

I study Biomedical Science and I remember very well when I started loving Science, especially Biology. I wasn’t exactly the best student during my high school years. My biology teacher got annoyed at me once and told me I wasn´t going to do well in my exams. After that I wanted to prove to him that I could do it and that I could be a responsible student. I started studying really hard, not because I liked biology (quite the opposite) but because I wanted to prove my teacher wrong. To my own surprise, I started really enjoying learning about the human body, and by the end of the year my marks turned out to be the highest in the whole class!

Why do I tell you this?

Studying and getting a degree is not based on how much you “feel like” studying or in how much you “feel like” writing your assignment. As a student, I am learning that sometimes it is more about learning to do what is right and then you will enjoy seeing the results of your hard work. It starts with a choice to work hard; feelings come later.

“It starts with a choice to work hard; feelings come later.”

As an international student, I am very aware from my own experience that the work doubles because of the language barrier. When other people take X amount of time writing an essay, you will take a bit longer reading and translating things. Lectures are harder to understand and asking for help can be challenging. But you know what? That doesn’t make you slow or silly, but brave.

It takes a lot of courage to come to the UK and decide to take the difficult, but not impossible, option. That’s why, my friend, I want to acknowledge your bravery and say well done!

My dear friend, I want to encourage you to keep up the hard work you have put in so far this year. Nobody says it is easy being an international student, but you can get through this coming exam period.

“Nobody says it is easy being an international student, but you can get through this coming exam period.”

You know what? You are not alone. There are many people who can support you in getting through this important time of your life! Find the Christian Union in your university and find out about your nearest international student café. You’ll find many other people going through the same challenge and the friendships you form will make this stressful time a little easier.

We can do it together!

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