Exam pressures demand de-stress with campus programs

Final exams are a part of every college student’s life. These tests are a large portion of the final grade, often accounting for 20 percent to 50 percent of the gradebook. 

If one doesn’tperform well on these exams it can jeopardize their grade and even lead to the failing of a class. 

These high pressure exams can cause students to experience symptoms of severe stress such as mood changes, loss of appetite and even illness. For students at Sonoma State University there are many resources that help alleviate the pressures of finals.

One resource students find helpful during finals week is Counseling and Psychological Services, also known as CAPS. Students can make an appointment with CAPSby scheduling a one-on-one appointment by calling (707)664-2153. 

The hours for these individual sessions are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. 

CAPS also offers drop in counseling hours for those who have had a difficult day, are in a sudden crisis or are experiencing stress from anything else. This service is offered weekdays from noon until 1 p.m. and Monday through Thursday from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.

CAPS is a program that is available for more than just finals week and can be utilized for free by every student at Sonoma State. 

“I have been to Sonoma State’s Counseling and Psychological Services program before for finals week and other times throughout the semester when I have felt like I needed help getting a weight lifted off my shoulders,” junior Andrew Maybo said.

CAPS also has tools online to help students facing hardships or more general problems. These tools include helpful apps and an online mental health screening test.

Some students enjoy working out to get their mind off of looming exams. The campus rec center offers a multitude of classes during the last few weeks of the semester. 

These classes range from 45 to 60 minutes in length, and include anything from yoga to spin, and even kick boxing. Working out allows the body to produce endorphins, allowing the brain to be ‘happier’ and a person’s mood to dramatically shift after relieving pressure. 

“Getting to the gym is a must for me during finals week. It allows me to take time for myself away from all my hard studying and provides me with a happy, positive outcome,” said junior Sara Van Wagoner. 

Students can find hours of operation for the gym and times of classes online or by visiting the rec center. 

Most students at Sonoma State are able to focus better and de-stress by getting their work and studying done in the library. The library is a great tool to utilize during finals week. 

The first floor will be open 24-hours during finals week, with the second floor open from 7:30 a.m. until midnight. 

“I think that I would have a more [successful] finals week if my teachers did review sections, study guides or narrowed down exactly what we needed to know for exams,” said junior Amber Rodarte. “Usually they are too broad with what they expect us to know.”