Exams are always stressful, but they need not be. If you start early and constantly work at it you can easily walk into the exam hall knowing all that you need to know to do well. Here are a few tips I use to help me study for an exam…
- Get Information about the Exam.About one or two weeks before your exam make sure you know details about your exam, know what time of the day it is and where it is. Also be sure to find out how the questions are structured and what sort of questions they will be, short answer long answer or multiple choice. Lastly make sure you know what your exam will be about! Its better to revise topics that are definitely coming up rather than some that might. Here is an article I wrote on the most important things you need to know about your exam.
- Space out your Study Regime.You may think you can leave everything till last minute and do really well in your exam. Well you may have done in the past with GCSE’s and maybe even A-level, but your degree is much harder. You should space out all your studying, giving yourself time to cover your course twice at the minimum. You should then leave time to review and answer practice questions too. In my experience a good 2 hours put in everyday is 10x better than 24 hours solid.
- Divide the Workload.It is a good tip in general to always divide a large task into smaller “bitesize” chunks. This way you can break-down the workload and it does not seem as daunting. Try to set yourself a goal of completing one chunk a day. One chunk could be One chapter or a whole topic, its up to you to decide.
- Review Review Review.
If you really want to remember everything that you are studying be sure to review everything you do constantly as you go! Once you finish a section be sure to leave it for a while and then review it an hour or so later. This is by far the best method to truly remember things.
- Word Cards.Sometimes it is important to be able to recall word-perfect definitions for certain words on your course, it can score you a few easy marks on certain occasions. The best way to revise these is to make word cards, which you can quickly flick through to remind you.
- Predict Questions.As I said in an early post about reading your course material, it is always important to keep asking yourself questions as you go through your textbook. Try just writing some possible exam questions at the side of your text while you read. Its great for revision later as you can try and find the answers to these questions.
- One Topic, One Page.Try making a summary of all your notes for a topic on one page, a sort of extreme summary page. These are great for last minute revising before you exam and help you keep the key ideas of a subject fresh in your mind before an exam.
- Test Yourself.Remember revision and knowing the content is only half the battle. You have to be able to answer what the question is asking of you, and demonstrate you know your subject matter. Testing yourself also remind you of things you may have forgotten.
Remember don’t leave it all till the last minute! If you want to do the best you possibly can study hard and work at it! It doesn’t just come to anyone easily, you need to work! Good luck in your exams and don’t worry!
I recently read a great book on the subject which I wanted to recommend to you. It’s called Smarter Student Planner 2020/21. It deals with everything from study skills to time management and to-do lists. This is really a must-read as a student!