It’s another late weekday night. Your roommate is going to be hanging out in the room all night with music blasting out of the big Bluetooth speaker, and you’ve got some required reading to do for class in the morning.
This scenario will end up happening more often than you may think, and even if your roommate doesn’t have a Bluetooth speaker, they will still distract you. Sometimes your room isn’t always going to be the best place for you to get work done, and since you’re a freshman you will almost certainly have a roommate that you’re going to have to deal with. It’s just part of the college experience.
I learned fairly early on where some of the best locations for studying are, but I only found some of these little nuggets of goodness by having people tell me about them. Some of them can really fly under the radar, and you can easily miss them if you aren’t paying attention to your surroundings.
One of the best places on campus is the bottom floor of the W.W. Hagerty Library. It may seem like an obvious one, but I’ve taken multiple friends of mine to the bottom floor and many of them didn’t even know it existed. Most people just head straight for the cafe area inside the library without taking a moment to look at a map of the building.
Don’t let any preconceptions that you have about libraries keep you from going there. The library doesn’t care what major you are — if you need a place to get work done, it has your back. For group work, the library also has group study rooms, but these have to be reserved by going to the library’s website. There’s even a quiet room on the bottom floor if you need absolute silence.
Another good spot is the study room inside of The Summit. This one is a bit trickier to get access to because you need someone who lives at The Summit to sign you in.
The study room in The Summit sees quite a bit of traffic and some people just go there to hangout. It’s surprisingly spacious — from the outside you can’t really see how big it actually is. There are a couple of tables with chairs, and some with booths, so you’ve got some good variety in that sense. The study room also has collaboration rooms for group work. Unlike the library, these rooms don’t have to be reserved, and that’s both a pro and a con. On one hand you can go and use them whenever you want, but on the other hand you don’t know when they’re unoccupied. Imagine making a trip across campus with the group that you have for a class project, having your friend sign all of you in, and then getting to the study room only to find that all the collaboration rooms are taken. Yeah, fun stuff.
The LeBow College of Business building is also a very solid choice for getting work done. If you’re on a solo mission, there’s a Starbucks inside the building and a large lounge area right next to it that contains an array of chairs, tables and couches for your use. Be careful though — because there’s a Starbucks present, the lounge area gets an incredible amount of traffic throughout the day, so if you’re going to study there it’s a good idea to have a backup location in the event that there are no places to sit.
There’s a small lounge area right next to the one near the Starbucks, and this one is located in the center of the building on the main floor. It doesn’t have the most comfortable seats in my opinion, but they get the job done. I wouldn’t recommend using this particular location for a study session that will take you multiple hours to complete. I use it when I need to bust out a few discussion board posts, and then use the library or The Summit when I need to write a long essay.
The LeBow building also has some very nice collaboration rooms on the second floor of the business building. You can make a reservation for this room by going to Lebow’s website. However, remember how I said the library doesn’t care what major you are? Well, LeBow cares to a degree, because these rooms are only open to LeBow students and those enrolled in a LeBow course.
This being the case, you will need to go through some extra work to get access to the rooms. There are so many students majoring in a Lebow program, and there are even more who are enrolled in a business course, so making a friend that fits one of these two criteria isn’t hard at all. Once you’ve passed that step, you can use the rooms for any class work that you want.
There are a few other good spots that you can go to on campus to study. The small room located in MacAlister Hall between the Writer’s Room and the Barnes and Noble, the two Saxbys on campus, the open space located at the end of the hall on the fourth floor of Lincoln University City — the list goes on.
You’ll slowly discover good locations as you get more familiar with the campus, or you will make friends with some sophomores, juniors or seniors that will already know the good spots and just show them to you. Either way, take the knowledge I’ve given you and put it to good use. The usage, or lack thereof, of these study spots could have an effect on how well you’re able to study.