Exam season is almost upon us. There’s not much time left for revision or studying (hopefully you’ve already done the majority of it), so here’s some top tips to make the most of every minute before you put pen to paper on the exam sheet.
Remove any and all distractions
No. NO. Bad Netflix. This is the prime directive: you need to remove anything that entices you to procrastinate.
Tell your family, friends and flatmates not to disturb you during revision time. Set aside time for pure, focused study and make use of the Pomodoro Technique – concentrating on a single topic for 25 minutes at a time, then taking a 5 minute break. Repeat until exams are over.
Find your place
Where you study is just as important as how and when. Your study space should have plenty of natural light and as few distractions as possible. Make sure you’re comfortable, warm and have everything you need to revise.
Make a cheat sheet
In the days leading up to each of your exams, make a cheat sheet for each subject. On that sheet, write down (or draw) all of your module’s important information in small chunks of content. Use diagrams, mnemonics, acronyms, formulae – whatever helps you to remember what you need to know. Just by writing out your cheat sheet, you’ll have revised what you need to know once already.
Be motivated and think positively
Try and stay relaxed. Exams are one of the most stressful things you’re going to experience in adult life. You’ll get through this – be positive, keep yourself motivated and relax from time to time. Your revision will improve. You can do this – but if you’re struggling, Student Support Services can help.
Don’t just read
There’s more to revision than reading text books or notes. Test yourself with past papers and cheat sheets. Pop quiz your pals. Watch topic-relevant videos on YouTube to add context to your studies and look for real life examples on the topics you’re studying.
Take a break
Put the books down for just a short while. Get outside, get some fresh air. Talk to people. Revising continuously will eventually just wear you out and may be counter-productive to your studying. Try the Pomodoro Technique (above) if you need to structure your revision.
Have breakfast and stay hydrated
Mum always said breakfast was the most important meal of the day, and on exam day it’s paramount. Have a good, hearty breakfast and avoid the temptation of sugary drinks or sweets. It’s also important that you stay hydrated throughout the day with water (or tea).