Preparing for the Finals Week Saga

Hey fellow UGLers. Finals are here and we’re all scrambling to get everything done at the last minute. Some of you may feel completely prepared, but some are still procrastinating. If you have hours of work to do and need a place to hunker down and do it, you’re in luck: the UGL is staying open 24 hours through finals week. This means that we won’t close all weekend – you can stay as long as you need (the media enclosure will close at midnight Friday and Saturday, though, so grab your study break movies before then).

If the amount of work you have left to do feels overwhelming, have no fear: the UGL is also here to offer some study tips and ways to de-stress while you make it through. After all, you want to be in good shape to kick butt down to the last final.

image of dorm room with belongings scattered all over desk and floor

Finals can sometimes make us a little disorganized. Photo Courtesy of Sterling Coffey via Flickr

1. First things first, make a list of all your projects, when they are due, and what exams you have to prepare for. It’s best to have all the tasks you must do in front of you. This way, you can prioritize which assignments and which projects are the most important.

whimsical sepia image of list

Be sure to organize your assignments by making a list! Photo courtesy of Hey Paul Studios via Flickr

2. Once you have all the due dates figured out, write them down in a calendar and be sure to write reminders to yourself. Prefer a paper-less reminder? Make a task list or set reminders in your phone. A good way to deal with the stress of many projects is divide them up and work on them in increments of time.

image of weekly planner with events satisfyingly checked off

Using a calendar to keep track of everything is the way to go! Photo courtesy of Jenni Konrad via Flickr

3. Choose your study space. Some people like to study at libraries, others at coffee shops, and some in the comfort of their own apartment. Wherever you choose to study, make sure it’s good for you and your needs. The University of Illinois has many libraries around campus with a variety of study spaces – find out which one suits your needs best and when each library is open!

image of computers in scholarly commons

There are many great places to study on campus!

4.  If you need help with something, ask for it! Professors, teaching assistants, and even librarians are here to help you, so don’t hesitate to reach out if you feel like you’re struggling.

Librarians help students during office hours, too.

If you have any questions or need help, look up your professor’s office hours

5. If you feel anxious, calm down! This can sometimes be easier said than done, but there are a couple of healthy methods to keep your stress low.

  • Exercise! Go for a run or go to one of the two exercise complexes on campus. For information about their hours, see their website.
  • Go to the library and check out a book or a good movie! The UGL has a great selection of movies and they are free to rent! Res Hall libraries also have great movie collections. Look up books or movies in our catalog.
  • If there is a hobby that you enjoy, take a quick study break and do that activity!
  • You can also de-stress with help from some fuzzy friends: the UGL and Grainger will be having therapy dogs the weeks of finals. Get the details on those delightful dogs and drop by if you can.

For more study tips and ways of de-stressing, be sure to check out our  Pinterest board! Good luck with finals, and may the odds be ever in your favor.

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Get Some Doggone Hugs!

The UGL has gone to the dogs – therapy dogs, that is. Two therapy dog events are scheduled in the library during finals week to help you de-stress and finish this semester strong. Read on to find out the details and to meet the hard-working pups who make it all happen!

Malamute being petted by many hands

Sam will accept your adoration.

Sam the Alaskan Malamute has been to events at the UIUC libraries before, but he keeps coming back to see all his favorite people, and to please his loyal fans. Sam is a master of chilling out and napping, and will be pleased to teach you his stress-free ways, which he has been working on quite diligently for all of his 8 years.

Poodle licking lips in a silly way

Raven thinks the UGL is delicious!

Raven the Standard Poodle is also a library event veteran. Though her schedule is very busy with catching Frisbees and chasing tennis balls, she’s always happy to make time and come to the libraries for some petting. She’s 7 and a half, and prefers the company of adults like herself, since they are the best at the aforementioned petting.

Black Labrador retriever with soulful eyes

Neo looks expectant because he hears you give belly rubs, which are his favorite.

Neo the Labrador Retriever is 7 years old, and he hasn’t been to the UIUC libraries before, but he spends a lot of time at Carle Hospital and helping children in schools through the R.E.A.D. program. He’s also been given the Helping Hand award by the Champaign Fire Department for his help with crisis response. We’re sure he’ll be a big hit with all our students as well.

Boxer dog looking friendly on a couch

You don’t need a telescope to see how cute Tycho is.

Tycho the Boxer is a 9-year-old lover of cat food and new friends. He spends his days encouraging violin students by singing along, and playing with two Cornish Rex cats (from whom he steals the cat food). He also accompanies the violin students to performances at nursing homes, other libraries, and fundraisers.

These wonderful canine companions will be available on the following days:

  • Thursday, December 12th, from 2-4 PM in Grainger Engineering Library (Raven, Sam, and Neo)
  • Monday, December 16th, from 2-4 PM in the Undergraduate Library (Raven, Sam, Neo, and Tycho)

While you wait for the big dog days to arrive, you can follow the UGL’s  Therapy Dog Pinterest board to read up on therapy animals and how they help various people. The dogs (and the library!) look forward to seeing you there!

 

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No sleep ’til summer

Try not to get too stressed as the school year wraps up in the next week. With last-minute group meetings and cram sessions, you may find you need a place away from your dorm or apartment to study. If you find yourself in the unfortunate event of having to pull an all-nighter, the UGL is here for you 24/7 during finals week.

Night time photo of the UGL courtyard

We’re here for you–all night, every night during finals week.

Here are our special hours for finals week:

  • The UGL will be open continuously from now until Friday, May 10th, when we’ll close at 7 PM.
  • If you plan on hanging with us all night, read our tips to get the most out of the library services.
  • The UGL will remain closed the weekend of commencement, May 11-12.

We’ll start our summer hours on Monday, May 13th. So if you’ll be hanging with us in Chambana this summer, be sure to watch our blog, Twitter, and Facebook for hours updates.

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Dog Days

Hey, #ClubUGL! Therapy dogs are coming back to the library for finals week!

Sam is a cutie and would love to see you.

Cuddle up with a book and a pup!

We know how stressful finishing classes can be—especially at the end of the school year. So if you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, need a study break, or just simply love dogs, make sure you stop by to visit.

Sam the Alaskan Malamute and Raven the standard Poodle will be back (Read more about them here!), courtesy of the Champaign-Urbana Canine Connection.

So just where is all this fuzzy, puppy goodness happening? We’ve got three locations this time, to best suit your needs:
Friday, May 3rd: ARC (11am-2pm)
Monday, May 6th: UGL (2pm-5pm)
Tuesday, May 7th: Grainger (2pm-5pm)
Hope to see you next Monday at the UGL—make sure you pick up a custom-made bookmark featuring one of our Dog Stars, too!
Happy studying!
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24 Hour Study People

It’s official. The UGL will not close between now and Thursday, Dec. 20 at 7pm. Adding to our already study-friendly 24/5 schedule (open 24 hours a day, Sunday thru Thursday), in honor of finals week, the UGL will remain open 24 hours this weekend, too.

Su nup to sun down and back to sun up, the UGL will be here for you.

What does this mean for you? You’ve got one more place to add to your study location list. For the most part, all services will be available. Group rooms? Check. Loanable technology? Check. Friendly, capable employees that can help with any of your research questions or library needs? Check, check, check.

The lower level will also remain open 24-hours for quiet study (during the week, it usually closes at 2am) and the media collection (DVDs, etc.) will close at midnight both Friday and Saturday nights (DVD retrieval will still be available by request). Per usual, group study is more than welcome on the upper level. A few other things to remember:

  • If you’re planning to be in the library late, make sure you’ve got a friend to walk you home! (You can also use MTD’s SafeRides between 5pm and 6:30am, and check out other campus safety tips.)
  • Stay hydrated! Beverages (with lids) are welcome in the library, and there are drinking fountains located in the upper level lobby and near rest rooms.
  • No food is allowed in the library. We know this kinda stinks, but dems da rules. We encourage you to bring snacks to eat in the Espresso area (those tables remain available even if Espresso is closed). It’s good to get up and stretch, anyway! And if you don’t want to move all of your stuff, we have laptop locks & lockers to keep your stuff safe while you take a snack break.
  • Printing out a bunch of stuff? Here’s a reminder on how to do it.
  • The Lower Level is for quiet study. Please be respectful of this rule—everyone’s a bit stressed and working under deadlines, so a quiet environment is important. If you need to chat with your group members, talk on your phone or LOL at something funny on the interwebs, please go into one of the lobbies, the courtyard or the Upper Level.
  • Congratulations! You totally knocked out that final paper or studied so hard for your exam your eyeballs almost fell out. Now, you get to leave the UGL. Hooray! Make sure you take all of your stuff and throw away any of your trash. Lots of people will be using this space this weekend, so please help us keep it as tidy as possible.

Good luck on finals, Club UGL. We know you’ve got this!

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End of the semester survival guide

You might have missed it, but Chambana saw it’s first snowfall of the season this week. And that means that the end of the semester looms ever closer. Please, don’t panic. Follow our survival tips to make to the end of the semester with [most of] your sanity in tact.

Student surrounded by piles of books

Don’t worry. This doesn’t have to be you.

1. Have a plan. Maybe you’re an incessant list maker. Maybe you like to draw flow charts. Maybe highlighting and littering the margins of your class syllabi with notes is your way of organizing. Do you have a planner that Mom gave you when you left, and now is hidden under a pile of unwashed clothes in your room? Now would be a good time to bust it out. Whatever works for you, do it. Figure out what you have to get done and when each item is due. Write it down. Put it somewhere you’ll see it. This will help ensure you don’t forget about anything important.

2. Plan a study sesh. You’re probably not the only person in your class stressing about that comprehensive final in three (Really? Just three?!) weeks. Join forces to divide and conquer. If you want to get really ambitious, create yourself a Jeopardy game board and challenge each other. Losing team buys the pizza.

3. Stay healthy. With all the things you have to do, sometimes you feel like you don’t have time to eat or sleep. But nothing is more important to your brain health than keeping yourself well-nourished and getting a good night’s sleep.

4. Take a break. Sometimes, your mind just needs to kick back and play frisbee. So schedule yourself some downtime in between the madness. Indulge in your favorite movie (don’t forget the popcorn), play a video game (we’ve got a lot in the UGL you can check out), or get some facetime with your BFF you haven’t seen in days. You want to work hard, but don’t forget to play, too.

Stay strong, Club UGL. You’ll make it.

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Stress Busters

Fall break is over and semester crunch time is here. With only a little more than two weeks until finals, we know things can get pretty crazy-stressful. Here at the UGL, we hope to help make the weeks leading up to finals as stress-free as possible.

book cover: small logo of yellow flower

The UGL will be extending hours during finals (more details to come—watch this space) and reminds you that we have group study rooms on the upper level, private reading rooms and editing rooms on the lower level, a ton of loanable tech items to help with final projects, and helpful librarians who can point you in the right direction when you’re looking for sources and articles for your end-of-semester research papers. But we know that’s not always enough to keep the stress levels down. McKinley Health Center has links to pamphlets on how to handle different types of stress; Campus Recreation has plenty of activities to help blow off some steam; and many of the residence halls host stress-relief events leading up to finals, so make sure you check the University Housing schedule, too.

Finally, If you start to feel overwhelmed, check out a few of these books full of stress-busting tips, available in the UGL:

book cover: the Superstress SolutionThe Superstress Solution
By Roberta Lee

 

 

 

book cover: 1001 ways to relax1,001 Ways to Relax: An Illustrated Guide to Reducing Stress
By Mike George

 

 

book cover: managing stress with qigongManaging Stress with Qigong
By Gordon Faulkner

 

 

 

book cover: the end of stress as we know itThe End of Stress as We Know It
By Bruce McEwan

 

 

 

book cover: 365 ways to relax mind body and soul365 Ways to Relax Mind, Body & Soul
By Barbara L. Heller

 

 

 

book cover: stress management and preventionStress Management and Prevention: Applications to Everyday Life
By Jeffrey A. Kottler & David D. Chen

 

 

 

book cover: managing stressManaging Stress: Principles and Strategies for Health and Well-Being
By Brian Luke Seaward

 

 

 

book cover: complete idiot's guide to beating stressThe Complete Idiot’s Guide to Beating Stress
By Arlene Matthews Uhl

 

 

 

 

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