Midterms are officially upon us, and while, as COM students, we often don’t have too many exams in our class schedules, chances are, there will be some large papers, tests, or projects coming your way in the next couple of weeks.
This can be a crazy time of year, especially if you’re in your first semester here at BU. Everyone is busy making sure they do their best, all while balancing a million different tasks, and trying to remember to get more than four hours of sleep and eat more than two Cliff bars between classes.
And to make matters worse, you have to compete with 32,000 other undergrad and grad students for study space. It’s the age-old story: you pack up all your study materials, a water bottle, some snacks, your headphones, and make your way to the third floor of Mugar only to find there is not a single study carol or seat available. This exact scenario happened to me my freshman year studying for finals, except then from Mugar, I made my way to the Boston Public Library just to find there was not a seat available there either. After spending two hours traipsing around the city, I was so frustrated, and then felt even more stressed after wasting valuable study time.
So trust me, I get that moments like this can be incredibly demotivating when you’re trying to maximize your time and focus. To help you guys from running into this same issue, though, I have compiled a great list of the best places on a BU’s campus to get the most work done, and to minimize stress.
If you like to study/work in absolute silence, go to…
- Mugar Memorial Library
- Okay so I know I just bashed Mugar a little bit, and it may not be my go-to study destination, but so many people at BU have great success doing work there. The first two floors tend to be noisier, with people printing, working in groups, getting library resources, and taking campus tours. Once you get to the third floor, though, most everyone is respectful and virtually silent.
- Large-dorm study rooms
- I had some of my best luck getting things done freshman year in the Warren Towers’ study rooms, especially the one’s right across from the mail room. It does get very chilly in there, though, which really motivates you to work efficiently. There’s similar study rooms in West and Towers, too, although I have found that the ones in Warren remain the quietest
- Top floor of Stuvi2
- I guess this falls under “large-dorm study rooms”, but it’s too amazing not to have its own section. If you haven’t been to the 360-degree study room at the top of Stuvi2, you NEED to find the time sometime this week to do so. It’s truly one of the most incredibly features of this school, and it makes studying just a little more bearable. Plus, if you haven’t taken a Boston skyline time-lapse from the 26thfloor, do you even go to BU?
- Your dorm room
- Sometimes, if you know it’s going to be impossible to find a spot anywhere or you just don’t feel like getting up (but still know you have work to get done), your best-bet may be to do some work from your dorm room. The main problem here is the potential for so many distractions, so get your roommate(s) to hold you accountable, and reward yourself for being productive. Plus, you get to study in pajamas, and that’s what college is really all about.
If you work better with a little noise, or need to work with a group, go to…
- The COM Student Lounge
- This is my all-time favorite place at BU to study, do homework, and do group projects. There’s comfortable seating, charging stations for your phone, and it’s super convenient if you have some time to kill before/after a class in COM. It’s usually pretty quiet, but everyone understands that people go in there to have group meetings, so there’s always some light chatter.
- The GSU
- The GSU can sometimes be like Mugar, in the sense that it can be hard to find a seat (especially one with an outlet), but if you get there at the right times, it can be a great place to do work and meet with a partner. You have easy access to hundreds of dining options, Dunkin’ OR Starbucks, and Mugar is right in the same building if you decide you want to work there instead. Last semester, during finals, I camped out in the Backcourt area of the GSU literally all day long (I had Rhett’s for all three meals), and was able to get so much accomplished!
- Side-note: the Buick Street Market is a smaller, West campus-version of the GSU and it is another great option!
- On-campus Starbucks’
- Okay, so this can be hit-or-miss. While I always end up here because I am a coffee fiend, I try to avoid the Warren Starbucks like the plague. The lines are always way too long, and it can get crowded. Some of the tables in the back, though, are actually kind of secluded, and not bad places to tackle a paper. You also get the benefit of being surrounded by coffee. That being said, I would definitely recommend the Questrom Starbucks first and foremost, followed by the one in West. If you’re feeling really adventurous, you can run into me at the Starbucks near my off-campus apartment at 1304 Comm. Ave!
- Dining Halls
- Just one meal swipe to comfy booths and unlimited desserts, all in an easy on-campus location that you were planning to grab food from anyways. Plus, if you live in Warren, you don’t even have to leave the building! Need I say more?
Working hard in school can already be stressful enough, you shouldn’t have to worry about finding a place to study. So with that, I leave you with this list, and wish you the best on all upcoming papers, projects, and midterms!