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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Sunday, May 19, 2024

A senior’s guide to Tufts’ best study spots

There are so many options that encourage productivity at Tufts. Here are some of my favorites.


Tisch Library is pictured on March 3.

Congratulations on your acceptance to Tufts! I will always remember the feeling of joy I experienced when I opened my Tufts acceptance letter. Getting into Tufts is an amazing achievement, and you should be extremely proud.

Tufts is filled with hard-working, bright students. We study a wide variety of subjects and are members of over 350 clubs. We do work all over campus, everywhere  from our dorms to the library. If you decide to attend Tufts, you will need to know the best study spots on campus. As a second-semester senior, I have spent my time studying in many locations, and I hope to provide insight into my favorite spots so you can be prepared for your arrival in Medford.

Tisch Library — First Floor

The library is the quintessential study spot at Tufts. Featuring four floors, Tisch Library is a great place to study no matter what type of work you have or what time of year it is. The classic rule of thumb is that the farther down you go, the quieter it gets. Yes, students enter the library on the second floor because of the hill, and they are immediately greeted with rows of desks and book stacks. Tisch has large tables which are great for group work.

I prefer the first floor of the library, which has an abundance of tables and individual study carrels. The first floor is quieter than the second, largely because copious collections of books and archives take up potential seats, leaving the first floor with fewer occupants. I go here if I have work that needs to get done. During finals and midterms, Tisch can get busy, so be sure to arrive early to grab a seat.

Finally, Tisch has the Tower Café, a small coffee shop where students can grab a pick-me-up and quickly return to studying.

Joyce Cummings Center

The JCC is home to the economics, math and computer science departments, as well as several other programs. Located near the Steve Tisch Sports and Fitness Center, the JCC can be a hike for some students depending on where they live; however, the JCC is one of my personal favorites because of its ambiance and decor, and because there’s a Starbucks inside — be sure to order before the end of class to avoid long wait times.

Students from all majors, not just those from departments housed in the JCC, flock there regularly. Each floor has small tables that can be easily rearranged to accommodate groups of any size. On the fifth floor, there is a collaboration room with only six or seven tables that overlook Boston and many Tufts athletic fields.

The JCC is a great study spot for students who rely on caffeine. Its biggest weakness: the lack of tables.

Science and Engineering Complex

Though the SEC houses the School of Engineering, most Tufts students study there at some point. Its biggest draw is Kindlevan Café, the dining establishment at Tufts famous for fresh smoothies. Kindlevan also serves up a variety of coffee and tea beverages, baked goods and sandwiches.

The SEC doesn’t have many tables, but it’s a great space for working alone or in a group. However, if you choose to study here, you have to be OK with background noise. Between student conversations and the roar of the blenders, you’ll be inundated by the hustle and bustle of campus life all around you. Not even noise-canceling headphones can save you.

Residence Halls

Not everyone likes studying in hyper-studious locations. Dorms and common rooms can be tranquil and comforting, especially if you are studying with your dormmates. When I arrived at Tufts in 2020, our only choices were to study alone or with our immediate neighbors, which, in retrospect, I am thankful for from a friendship perspective. Even with COVID-19 restrictions no longer in the picture, studying in your dorm is a great option with minimal distraction.

Some dorms have better study spots than others. In Miller Hall, where I lived my freshman year, there are several common rooms and study rooms where you can be productive. I preferred studying outside of Miller, but studying in any of the dorms is great for putting the finishing touches on a paper or problem set.

Dining Halls

This one isn’t super obvious, but the Tufts dining halls — Fresh at Carmichael Dining Center or the Dewick-MacPhie Dining Center — are great study spots for those looking to maximize the value of their meal swipes. If you swipe into a dining hall in the early morning, you can stick around through lunch and get two meals for the price of one swipe. During off hours, the dining halls are relatively quiet and can be great for getting quality work done.

I hope I’ve given you some ideas for where to study if you decide to attend Tufts. Congrats on your acceptance! Pax et Lux!