With lectures being virtual this semester, finals likely feel much more stressful. Whether you’re studying for your economics or biology exam, reading over your notes and rewatching lectures might feel repetitive and unhelpful. In addition to your usual studying, check out these YouTube channels and study sites for a fresh perspective on whatever topic you’re struggling with.
AP Economics teacher Jacob Clifford’s channel has hands-down the fastest and most comprehensive economics review videos on YouTube. If you want to get the overall gist of concepts from your Principles of Economics lecture, Clifford’s summary videos condense weeks of lectures into a matter of minutes. He might speak quickly, but he uses charts and images that help you understand each step of an equation while keeping you engaged.
Marginal Revolution University offers more in-depth explanations if you’re taking more advanced courses on microeconomics or macroeconomics. They also have videos applying lessons to historical and modern examples to ensure concepts are made as clear as possible.
Literature Humanities: Course Hero
Your Literature Humanities final might come in the form of an essay or a final group project. With fast-paced coursework and speedy book turn-over, you’ve likely forgotten many of the semester’s texts. But fear not, Course Hero is here to rescue you. Rather than skimming through the “Odyssey” or scouring “Aeschylus II: The Oresteia” for inspiration, Course Hero’s thorough video summaries will give you the information you need and help you save time.
Psychology: Crash Course
Remembering every term and scientist can be an excruciating process in psychology. If you’re mixing up B.F. Skinner with Abraham Maslow or can’t tell a dendrite from an axon, Crash Course’s psychology playlist is for you. The videos keep you thinking and asking questions through conversation style, and Hank Green’s passion for the topic is almost contagious. The delightful soundtracks will also keep your attention throughout your study session, and their cute and colorful diagrams will stick in your mind during your final.
Art History: Smarthistory
Smarthistory’s website is both accessible and informative. Its pages are clearly organized by geographical region and time period, making searches fast and effective. The site provides in-depth and specific discussion on artwork, while also laying out contextual analysis for each piece. If you’re looking for clear images of paintings, tapestry, and ceramic art, Smarthistory’s platform is a free and worthwhile site to use for your art history paper.
Watching foreign TV shows on Netflix and international films on Kanopy can dramatically improve your language skills. You might be struggling with intonation, grammar, or vocabulary, so listening to the conversations of native speakers (with subtitles) can help you prepare for your final. Reading a textbook all day can be laborious and overwhelming, so try switching it up with a movie to make language learning interesting and fun. While Netflix requires a subscription, you can get a free Kanopy account using your Columbia UNI.
Codecademy offers a free membership with an extensive course catalog, including Python, HTML, and Java. While its lessons aren’t as in-depth or theoretical as Columbia’s, it’s great for practicing programming problems and getting more comfortable with any language.
Khan Academy breaks down math topics into sections, so you can focus on individual areas that you might be having more difficulty with. It walks you through numerous examples, which you can solve along with the video, to increase your understanding.
OpenCourseWare is great for hearing another lecture on the same topic, as sometimes just having information presented in a new way can be beneficial; check out 18.01 for single Variable calculus, 18.02 for multivariable calculus, 18.03 for differential equations, and 18.06 for linear algebra.
Sciences: The Organic Chemistry Tutor
Despite the name of the channel, The Organic Chemistry Tutor offers videos on a number of different subjects, including chemistry, physics, and biology. These videos are great for walking through extra examples, and they cover virtually every topic that could come up in introductory classes. Additionally, you might appreciate everything being mapped out on the screen in more detail than your average lecture. Some of the videos can get a bit long, but there’s usually a helpful commenter pointing out the timestamps you really need.
Any writing class: Video SparkNotes
I think it’s agreed that SparkNotes saves lives. Academic texts can go completely over your head, so videos from SparkNotes guiding you along the reading process help lift the burden. The SparkNotes website holds an even wider pool of summaries and analyses that can inspire and get you on the right track.
Kurzgesagt is a master of animation and making any topic interesting. Although their library isn’t too extensive, the way they explain topics like dark energy, the UN, measles, and nihilism, just to name a few, is succinct and powerful. If you happen to come across a topic covered in one of your classes, you’re in luck.
While Quizlet is a flashcard-based platform, its interactive learning techniques lend themselves well to language classes or courses with finals that require recalling many facts, names, or dates. You can create your own study set from class materials or search for other students’ public sets that may be similar to yours. The website tests you on your knowledge through multiple choice or fill-in-the-blank responses, or you can choose to study by just reading through the virtual flashcard deck.
Staff writer Emma Cho can be contacted at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @emsoojin.
Staff writer Aliza Rabinovitz can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Spectrum on Twitter @CUSpectrum.