As it's exam time (woo), and I know a lot of you are doing the dreaded exams at the moment, I thought I would compile a little list of my top tips and tricks for revising. I hope they come in handy!
1// Before Revising
- Either make a to-do list or a timetable. Personally, to-do lists suit me more, as I am the type who studies a topic until it's done, I can't say that I'll study a topic for half an hour, because who knows how long it will take to learn it properly?! To make a to-do list, decide which subjects take priority, such as your weakest subject or the earliest exams on your exam timetable. Try not to focus only on the subjects that you are good at and enjoy, spread the love around!
- Get rid of distractions. Turn off the TV, your computer, and put your phone away. I do use my phone occasionally to look things up, but if you need a translator, use a dictionary as online translators are often not grammatically correct. Just ask your teacher, they can easily spot an essay that has been Google Translated to within an inch of it's life!
2// During Revision
- Write notes. I find that this method of revision works the best for me. Get an A4 Refill Pad (like a Pukka Pad etc.) and use this for your notes. You can get a pad for each subject if you like to keep your notes in it, but I just have one pad and tear out my notes, which I then put into the corresponding folder. This method works well for subjects with a lot of theory, like Home Ec, Art History, Science subject and Business. The main objective is to condense the chapters as much as possible so you can just glance over notes before an exam. There isn't much point in having notes that are super long and detailed, you may as well just use the textbook!
- Don't just read the book. A study session is not worthwhile if you just sit there reading. When I do this, I end up just getting bored and not learning anything! Write notes, or even draw mind-maps if the subject allows it. Doing past paper questions is also great, as it gives you an idea of what you will be expected to know, and the structure of the paper.
- Use color. When writing notes, use color as this will highlight the important parts, and make looking over notes much easier before going into an exam. Get a pack of colored pens/ markers (like you need another excuse?!) and use a different color for titles of topics, definitions, and other important parts.
- Lay it out carefully. Again, this will just make pre-exam revision much easier, if everything is laid out clearly and comprehensively. The use of color will also help this!
- Take breaks! This is so important in order to actually retain any of the information you have looked over! If you study for 3 hours straight, you may remember one thing from the beginning of the 3 hours, but not much else. After each topic, or every 40 mins if you prefer, go out of your room/ study space, and do something that isn't study! Read a blog post, watch a youtube video or if like me, you're weird, stretch! I love to stretch because I'm working on being able to do the splits, and it also helps stretch my back because I tend to slouch at my desk. Weird, I know!
3// After Revison/ Before Exam
- Get a good night's sleep. This is so important, as you do not want to be tired the day of an exam. If it's getting late and you feel like you still aren't ready, go to sleep early and set your alarm a little earlier than usual so you can fit in a bit more study. Read over notes and say them aloud a few times, especially if they are things like science equations. It also helps to write them down a few times without looking at the book! Don't peek! ;)