End of winter and start of spring signals those dreaded words, ‘Exam time’… most students who are taking exams see far less of the sounds of summer as they are still seeing less day light hours than the students who don’t have exams to take. You might be tempted to leave your study and drift outside to catch the rays, but think again… you get very few chances to get a good grade. The secret is to try and get stuck in so you can have some time to relax, instead of playing catch-up, by putting it off till tomorrow and all of a sudden tomorrow arrives the day before the exam! It will soon be past and you will have a long vacation ahead.
How can we structure our study and avoid meltdowns?
1. You must be relaxed and in a positive frame of mind to make the best of your revision/study.
2. Make sure you look after your body by eating a good balanced diet (plenty of oily fish is good for the brain).
3. Plenty of sleep is so important for retention… a tired brain is a less active brain!
4. Structure your study into subject areas and concentrate more on your weaker subjects.
5. Make sure you set the tempo of your study programme… the right room temperature, the right light (preferably natural light) and the correct noise level.
6. Stay hydrated (two litres of water per day) as this can cause lack of concentration.
7. Make sure your study is relevant, have access to past papers as well as well managed course notes (indexed) and colour code your study notes.
8. Make sure you are well aware of your exam timetable, the marking scheme will give you an idea of the amount of points to be awarded per question, and this will give you an idea of how much to write, relative to the points awarded.
9. Confidence is an attribute and over confidence can be obstructive to sound revision.
10. Comprehension is key in most exams… the person marking your paper could be the other side of the country so bear that in mind and make it clear what is being said…make sure you have covered all points asked in the question.
11. On exam day, make sure you are relaxed and read through the paper before you begin to answer any questions… you will be more relaxed and positive and will make far fewer mistakes. Divide the questions by points value and time so you don’t spend too long on a given question.
12. Don’t revise on the day of your exam unless this works for you… cramming can cause confusion in many.
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13. Don’t dwell on a poor result, look forward to the next one… invariably you will have done better than you think.
Try to read books on subjects that interest you, record your work, watch documentaries/films on subject areas... You Tube is good for science/biology, history, literacy and geography. I read, then rough write my prep and then type it onto the laptop and by then it usually goes in.
Stay close to your family and open up with your thoughts…so many of us have been there and they really do mean well…they will embrace and support you good or bad.