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The Library Survival Kit

Published Friday, 24 April, 2015 by Beth Bradshaw

At this time of year long and gruelling library sessions are inevitable, especially if you find working at home is too distracting. Some of you may as well call the library your second home. But if you’re anything like me that usually ends up about 30% work 30% procrastination and 40% people watching.

Whilst early birds may do a shift from 9am-5pm, night owls often find themselves working throughout the night in the Library (that’s if yours opens overnight!). However, if you really want to get stuck into a big revision session then here are a few essentials to take with you.

  • Your notepads, USB sticks, notes and revision textbooks: basically, don’t leave the house without everything you need material wise. How frustrating is it when you get to the library and realise you’ve forgotten something important? Completely throws you off balance doesn’t it?
  • Highlighters, A3 paper, sticky notes and coloured pens to help with your revision techniques (I’m thinking spider diagrams and word clouds!).
  • Water: take a 75cl or even a 1ltr bottle if you can, as it encourages you to drink more. Some studies in the past have even suggested that drinking a sufficient amount of water can improve your grades – only by an average of 4.8%, but when it comes to exams every little helps! Staying hydrated throughout your revision sessions is so important as it helps you concentrate, so make sure to have a good gulp every 10 minutes or so.
  • The packed lunch to crown all packed lunches: In my opinion, the key to a successful revision session is a tasty packed lunch. Spend a bit of time the night before or get up a bit earlier to get yourself sorted. Try to include some fruit in there as well as some really filling snacks. Here are a few of my favourite foods to take with me:
    • Tuna pasta with sweet corn and cucumber: what student doesn’t like tuna pasta? Easy to whip up and really satisfying whilst your working.
    • Leftover risotto: in my opinion, it tastes even better the next day. Add a handful of salad, tomatoes and cucumbers for a healthy boost.
    • Egg mayo: the protein in egg will really fill you up and keep your hunger cravings at bay whilst you’re working.
    • Flapjack: the oats slowly release energy therefore keeping you fuller for longer
  • Flask: An essential in my opinion. Coffee, tea, hot chocolate or even soup, you can have a small cup to keep you going. I picked up one for as little as £4 in Primark, plus if you usually buy an expensive hot drink in the library it will save you money in the long run!
  • Headphones: don’t be blasting out heavy bass as it will definitely distract you (and get you in trouble in the library!), but a chilled out mix or some sort of background music will help phase out other students chatting away. For me, it’s a deal breaker! If I don’t have my earphones, no work will be done.
  • Some spare change for the vending machine – with all that hard work, you’re going to need a little treat here and there. Mine’s a Kit Kat!


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