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Two-day study period is not enough, students say

Boston University students will have two days as a school-designated “study period,” the time between the end of classes and when final exams begin, which is given to students to prepare for final exams during the following week.

Studying in Mugar
Students studying in Boston University’s Mugar Memorial Library. The study period is two days long this semester. ALI AUDET/DFP FILE

According to the University’s academic calendar, students will be granted free time between the last day of classes Dec. 12 and final exams beginning Dec. 15. BU typically allocates two business days for students to study, according to BU’s Center for Teaching and Learning. 

The Center for Teaching and Learning website has a page detailing policies and scheduling around the final exam period, saying professors are not to hold classes, mandatory class meetings or exams during the study period.

Other universities and colleges in Boston also have one to two day study periods, including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Massachusetts Boston, Boston College and Northeastern University.

Ivy League Universities, like Princeton University, Harvard University and Yale University all have week-long study periods during the Fall 2022 semester between students’ last day of classes and first day of exams.

BU Spokesperson Colin Riley said the study period is a time for students to review their notes and prepare for final exams. 

“What students should do during the semester is look forward, meaning know what’s coming next week,” Riley said. “(Students) should get plenty of rest, they should eat well and get some exercise if possible.”

Riley said students should allocate their time based on their workload.

“We don’t expect people to go around the clock. Some people do, depending on what work they’ve left for themselves,” Riley said. “BU students have successfully navigated semesters for over a century or more and had the same challenges and have done very well with them.”

Shmuel Bogomolni, a sophmore in the College of Arts and Sciences, said two days is not enough time for students to rest and adequately study for their exams.

“I think there should be a few days for relaxing,” Bogomolni said. “It would be nice if you could have a day or two before studying. After classes, I think people need it.”

Bogomolni said he thinks BU should expand the study period to three or four days and should encourage students to rest for a day or two before they begin studying.

“The school does not really give us that much (time) to relax,” Bogomolni said. “They say, ‘Be mentally healthy,’ but you can’t really be mentally healthy, happy, thriving when you’ve got classes, studying, finals.”

Daniela Magana, a sophomore in CAS, said she also thinks BU should extend the study period, as the study period is the first time many students are not distracted by classes and homework.

“I have some days where I have classes from morning until night and by the time the day is over, I’m just drained and I don’t have as much energy as I would if we have a day off to do homework,” Magana said. “If we had more days off, I feel like we could use that time to spend more time on our work.”

Magana said she reviews material for her exams during the study period.

“I personally do take advantage of the study days we get, because they’re right before exams, so obviously I’m going to use them to go over all the material we learned throughout the year,” she said. 

Rivkah Moshe, a senior in CAS, said she would like to feel more supported by the BU Administration during exam season. 

“All of the professors that I have had have been really kind and accommodating… but I feel like the BU Administration is very fluffy,” Moshe said. “I think there was an email today that said, ‘Stay well,’… but it’s like what are you going to do for me?”

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