The 5 types of international students during exam season
Exam season brings out the weirdest side to everyone. What type of student are you? Source: Shutterstock

The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming and summer is almost here. It’s the final stretch before you can kick and relax before the next academic year begins. The only thing standing between you and long summer days is a pile of revision and an exam timetable that’s looming scarily close.

Exam season is definitely one of the most stressful times of the year. After working so hard for the last few terms, you suddenly realise you don’t actually remember anything from a couple of months ago – and all your friends are in the same position.

Even the people you thought you knew best are suddenly turning into illusive night-owls or panicked library dwellers. It’s not long until summer is here and everything returns to normal, but until then we’re here to fill your procrastination-ridden minds with the five types of international student found during exam time…

1) The over-prepared panicker

This type of international student panics about EVERYTHING. What if you’re asked a question about content your lecturer didn’t get round to teaching? What if the exam time changes without you being notified? What if your arm falls off on the way to the exam so you can’t write a single thing?

This student has definitely been scarred by some intense tiger-parenting, but when anxiety levels are already high, it can be exhausting to be friends with someone like this. You want to help them but when every calming pep talk is met with another meltdown five minutes later, it can get a bit much.They are so worried they have overprepared for the exam ten times over, and you know they are going to smash out a top mark – so why are they so convinced they’re going to fail? The best way to deal with this type of person is to simply listen to them until they tire themselves out, chances are they just need to rant enough before they get some perspective.

2) The ‘it’s not happening’ one

In direct contrast with the overprepared panicker, the ‘it’s not happening’ type is worryingly chill. Every time you talk to them, they assure you they’ve already learned everything – but considering they were out partying until 5am every day this week, you have major suspicions.

Exam stress can be overwhelming, especially when you have family pressures to graduate with a top grade in the hardest subjects, leading some students to ignore the reality of studying altogether.

When you see your friend behaving like this, it can be tough because you know they’re sabotaging themselves. And when you’ve got tons of revision to do yourself, you don’t have time to force them to revise.

A good way to help this kind of person is to get on their level. Tell them you’ve been finding it hard to revise yourself due to the pressure, and they will feel able to open up to you. You can then slowly work together and show them that exams are not too scary after all, rather than seeing them sink when results are released. Besides, a little white lie never hurt anyone.

3) The library dweller

You usually hang with them every day, but now you’ve not seen them for weeks. No, it’s not because you’ve fallen out, it’s just because they’re constantly studying.

This type of international student is the envy of every friendship group. They’re nailing the whole university thing and doing what needs to be done. You know they’re going to score a top grade – and they deserve it too.

Although they’re winning at education life, it’s natural to be concerned for your friend’s wellbeing if they’re working all the time. Are they eating? Are they sleeping? You know working hard is important, but so is taking care of your basic needs.

If you want to check up on this type of friend, it could be a good idea to see them in the library and invite them out for lunch. This way, you can make sure they are eating and taking proper study breaks – and hey, maybe they’ll even inspire you to work harder, too!

4) The night owl

Kind of similar to the ‘it’s not happening’ student, this person seems to be doing no revision. Don’t worry though, little do you know they’re working away all night long while the rest of you are sleeping.

Everyone has different learning techniques but this student pushes it to the extreme. It might be well and good throughout the revision period, but the night owl could run into trouble when they have to wake up for an exam at a time when they would usually crash out.

Helping this type of student is actually fairly simple, just make it impossible to sleep during the day. If you live with them, play loud revision music when you wake up. Soon enough, your friend will have to sleep at night because they definitely won’t be able to sleep during the day. If you’re not lucky enough to live with them, simple text messages and phone calls should do the trick, or enroll one of their roomies to do your dirty work for you.

5) The chill but prepared

This type of international student is the envy of everyone. They actually revised all year long, so were pretty well prepared for exam season by the time it came around. While most students are panicking about what they don’t know, this student is chilling – and they deserve it!

You want to keep this friend around when you’re tackling the tricker parts of the course. They can practice what they know by explaining it to you and you can grill them on everything you don’t understand.

This is the type of student everyone should try to be, as preparation keeps stress levels down and allows information to be stored in your long-term memory long after graduation. This is especially important if you’re studying a course like medicine or law where you’ll likely need what you have learned in your everyday work.

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