The Five Stages of Finals

by Alex

There have been many lists about the various stages of finals. At The Hub, we decided to make our own Harry Potter-themed list for your nerdy enjoyment.

  1. The Procrastination Phase

When finals begin, some students have a low key sense of confidence—that they can handle finals—that they’re ready and don’t actually need to study. But more often, students underestimate the time it takes to prepare for finals or want to put off studying as long as possible. This is the calm before the storm.


Regardless of your motivations, you should not be deceived. You should be studying. Not sleeping.

  1. Panic Mode

When the procrastination phase ends, it ends abruptly and swiftly. It’s when the realization hits you that you may have much more to do than you anticipated.


Panic comes in stages and in varying degrees. Some students may panic as if they’ve just heard news that there is, in fact, a troll in the dungeon.


Some students even have full on melt downs from too much stress.


We’d much rather you skip this phase and just move onto the next stage.

  1. Productivity

Often fueled by Panic Mode, the productivity stage allows you to take a deep breath, and calm down enough to start getting something done.


Getting to this stage is the most crucial part of succeeding during finals. If you can get through the first two stages, or even skip them all together, you will be in much better shape for your finals. You may not even have to pull all nighters!

  1. Grim Acceptance

There comes a point when you have done all the preparation possible. Sometimes, it may not seem like enough. Thus, we call this phase Grim Acceptance—the stage that allows you to finally stop studying and working and accept what you were able to complete, but it may not bring the relief you were hoping for.

  1. Actual Acceptance

Upon the completion of a final exam or turning in a final paper, actual acceptance arrives—you have done all you can and relief finally starts setting in. You get a spring in your step—a breath of fresh air—new found confidence that you have just conquered your finals.


Are you in any of these stages now? Contact The Learning Hub and see how we can help!



Encouraging Words

It’s finals time. How many of you feel stressed about your impending tests and final projects? Well, The Learning Hub’s writing staff have a few words for you. Turn it on, and try to relax a little bit. Take a brain break for a minute, and then dive back into studying, ready to conquer the semester!

The Learning Hub is still available this week and next week for appointments, and we still have writing walk-in hours. Visit our website, check your campus announcements, or contact us for more information and to make sure you are prepared!

Finals Prep Tips

Are you in the midst of final projects, papers, and tests? The Learning Hub’s Writing Staff has some tips and tricks for you to keep in mind so that you get all the A’s you can! Check out our video below.

We still have appointments available in The Hub. Check out our website for our contact information, and get in touch to see when we can help you.

Walk-in hours in Founders Residence Hall are still happening this week, on Wednesday from 9:00pm to 12:00am in Room 150. Head over there to get some last minute help from Brock and James!

Finals are Coming!


In this video, our Academic Skills TA, Erin, walks you through how to best prepare for finals. How much have you studied? Do you feel prepared? Let us know in the comments!

Hello, my name is Erin Tomasino and I am a graduate student in the Human Development Counseling program here at UIS. My goal is to someday become a school counselor here in the Springfield area. I received my Undergraduate Degree from Eastern Illinois University in Psychology and Criminology. Some of my hobbies include spending time with family and friends, traveling, and going to concerts. I am very excited to be a part of The Learning Hub team and look forward to the opportunity to work with you to enhance your academic skills.

Quote: “Be the change you wish you to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi